The Rebel Federation has been thriving lately with the growth and newest additions of its Teams and Divisions. The community is very connected, with gaming being one of the core interests. While we tend to become super focused on our communities and groups, it is important to take care of ourselves, both online and offline! Before we dive right in, it’s necessary to understand what exactly self care is. Defining what self care is can be difficult, as it is very unique to each person. Everyone has different methods and ways of how they take care of themselves. They can vary from physical practices such as eating habits or exercising, to the spiritual aspects, with examples including meditation or yoga. You may not even be aware that some of your favourite hobbies are considered self care!

Most of the time, we imagine self care as putting a face mask on or sleeping in for an extra hour; it’s often perceived as a reward system rather than an essential. While this may be true, self care can even be the simple, everyday things like talking with friends or going on walks. You don’t always need to have a reason to treat yourself! Self care prevents us from being burnt out from our responsibilities, such as work or school. Working the day away might give us the feeling of productivity and accomplishment, but it may cause us to miss out on doing activities that we enjoy. If you’re feeling overwhelmed or stressed, ask yourself if you’ve been taking the time to look out for your health and wellbeing lately.

So you’re probably thinking, how does this relate to gaming?

It is a well known fact that video games aren’t exactly seen in a positive light by the public. You’ve probably heard someone say video games were detrimental for you at some point. As pictured above, the most widely used definition of self care is taking action to ensure your wellbeing and happiness. It’s certainly not as easy now to do the activities we enjoy because of the pandemic we are currently facing. Because of this, many of us rely on our online communities or games as a way to cope with our stress and escape from reality.

Some reasons why video games can be a self care method are:

  1. Stress-Reducing Benefits
    Stress is inevitable and no one is exempt from feeling it. Depending on what we play, video games can take our minds off of stressful situations. They give us a temporary break and help blow off any steam that we might have unknowingly built up. Whether we’re building a house on Minecraft or going fishing in Animal Crossing, games give our minds a sense of ease as we are taken into another world.
  2. Increases Social Interaction
    Staying indoors for most of the day can often make us feel a bit disconnected or lonely. Thankfully with technology, we are just a click away from chatting with our friends and making new ones. Socially interacting with people can improve our moods, and platforms such as Discord or online games like Club Penguin and Roblox can make it easier!
  3. Strategy Building and Brain Stimulation
    Do you have a problem that you just can’t seem to find the solution to? Turn on your Nintendo Switch for a while and it might just help! Games that require a bit more thinking or creativity like Baba is You or Legend of Zelda can stimulate our minds and encourage us to think outside of the box. They put us in difficult situations that we must solve in order to move onto the next level. As a result, video games can develop the mind and help us form strategies to problems we may encounter in real life.

Keep in mind that while playing video games has its benefits in regards to our self care and wellbeing, too much of them can actually be damaging to your health. Make sure to play games in healthy amounts, and don’t forget to take breaks and enjoy the world beyond your screen! 


INTERVIEW PORTION

To get more information on what self care is in our community, I’ve decided to interview Call of Duty: Mobile Division Leader Taz on his perspective and personal self care methods on this concept:

Tulia: First question: How would you define self care?

Taz: For me, self care isn’t just keeping yourself fit or mentally happy, it’s a mixture of both. Self care is doing what you enjoy. Exercise how you want to exercise. Don’t bind yourself to a single type of exercise, go try out different kinds! Keep trying new things in life wherever you are, and if you ever feel down or in a tight spot, TAKE A BREAK, nothing is more important than yourself (narcissistic, I know)! Suppose I was feeling extremely down, I would just take a day off and do whatever the heck I wanted.

Tulia: That’s awesome! I definitely agree with taking a break. What are some self care practices that you do?

Taz: The self care practices that I do are:
~Exercising (I listen to anime openings while I exercise, so KARAOKE TIME)
~Food: Recently for the past couple months or so, I’ve been cooking my own food. The first 2 weeks of learning how to cook is always tough and makes you feel like quitting, but if you stick through it, you’ll find it’s something that you can truly enjoy, and trust me, there is NOTHING more enjoyable than eating your own food!
~Playing games, Outdoors: Basketball and/or volleyball + Indoors: Chess, puzzles and a lot of CODM! (Pssst , join the CODM Division)

Tulia: Those are a lot of amazing self care practices! It’s great of you to be cooking your own food and really looking after yourself. Do you think self care can have an impact on gaming quality?

Taz: Self care can definitely have an impact on gaming quality! If I’m not feeling well in any way, it obviously affects my competitive spirit and makes my brain feel sluggish, leading to slow reflexes and an overall sense of frustration and rage quitting, etc.
Also, it might just be an annoying habit of mine, but before I sit down to play or do something, I always wash my hands and face, I don’t know why, it just feels neater and more refreshing after I do so.
Moral: Wash your hands or get screenshotted by me :gun: (*
Insert Pepe with gun emote here*)

Tulia: I agree with the effects of self care on gaming! Do you have any final comments you’d like to add?

Taz: Eat good food. I suggest learning and cooking Asian recipes (for vegetarian dishes with potatoes, carrots, etc., I’d suggest Indian recipes, you can always ask me for some), while for meat-related recipes, I’d highly suggest Mediterranean cuisine and really all of South East Asia. You can eat as much as you like, just remember to exercise as well. Take care of yourself, nothing comes before you. Not work, not studies, only you.
Join the CODM division.
FIGHT THE GOOD FIGHT.

Tulia: Thanks for the interview, and fight the good fight!

Taz is very aware of the concept of self care and even has personalized methods to help protect his happiness and health! Even with the responsibilities of leading the CODM Division as well as his real life priorities, he still takes time out of his day to take care of himself. It’s incredible to find out how one of his self care practices is playing CODM! Knowing that you can lead a division for a game that you can also find comfort in is both impressive and inspiring. Like he has mentioned, one of the important steps for self care is to take a break. Oftentimes, we feel guilty for putting ourselves first over other priorities, but know that it is completely okay! It seems like we could all get some pointers (both self care AND cooking) from Taz.


And there we have it! Remember that it is important to treat yourself every once in a while. How would YOU define self care? Are there any methods you do to relieve stress and make you feel better as a whole? Be sure to keep an eye out for our blog posts as we delve deeper into self care.

Sources:
https://antlionaudio.com/blogs/news/4-ways-gaming-is-self-care
https://www.collegeraptor.com/find-colleges/articles/tips-tools-advice/science-says-playing-video-games-can-make-you-smarter/

Gaming as a form of self-care

Tulia

she a little confused, but she got the spirit