Ahhh, The Sims. When I think of The Sims, it brings back nostalgic memories of my childhood.
Looking back, I wasted a LOT of time playing this game. But it’s only when I stopped and looked back on these memories that it hit me. Playing this game set me up for Entrepreneurial success.
So bear with me as I explain to you, exactly how playing The Sims makes you a better Entrepreneur.
What is “The Sims”
Real quick, before we go any further, for those of you who’ve never heard of The Sims (do you exist?) here is a very quick breakdown. It’s essentially a “life simulation” game, in which you are placed in control of “Sims” (virtual people) and have the “task” of doing with them whatever you please. For most people, this is advancing them throughout the different stages of their lives by doing things such as creating wealth, starting families, gaining knowledge and so on.
How does it make you a better Entrepreneur?
You start the game by creating your Sim(s). Then, you choose your “starter home” (or plot of land). You start with a small amount of money, so your options are limited and basic.
Just like in the “real world” you have bills and utilities which need to be paid, so you need a way of generating income. You grab the newspaper or log onto your computer and look for jobs. Since you are a new Sim, just like in the real world, you start off with no skills, so your jobs are limited to “entry-level” positions. These are generally low paid and take up a significant amount of your time (again, like in the real world).
To progress, you will need to increase your skills. You can do this in a number of different ways, the most popular is to read books and gain the knowledge you need to progress.
Essentially, whilst playing the game, you just sit there and watch your Sim read a book. Since you are in control, this happens for as long as you choose.
It’s the same with everything within the game.
- Want to get in shape? Watch your Sim work out.
- Want to get rid of your social anxiety? Watch yourself practice speaking with yourself and other Sims
- Hungry? Watch your sim cook
It’s at this point when you start to realize just how playing this silly game is giving you the skills you need to succeed in life.
Step 1. Disassociate yourself with yourself
Ok, so I’ve given you a basic understanding of how this works. You’ve got your first job and immediately, you want to get a promotion so that you can 1) earn more money and 2) work fewer hours.
You will be given tasks and targets by your employer. These can be linked with your fitness, knowledge, and skillset.
Let’s say you took a cooking job. In order to progress and get your promotion, you need to up your cooking level to level three. Remember you start out a level zero on all skills within the game.
So, you immediately instruct your Sim to grab the cooking book from the bookshelf and you force them to read the book for the next seven hours.
Now, if this was real life, people would find countless excuses as to why they can’t do that. It’s boring, I’ve got better things to do yadda yadda.
And this is where you need to learn to disassociate yourself.
The “excuses” are thoughts. It’s your brain telling you how to act and feel based on emotions. It wants the easy option. It would much rather vegetate in front of the TV for a few hours.
This can easily be linked with people wanting to start a business. Most people don’t because of fear. Will they fail? Where do they start?
Again, this is your brain using emotions to tell you how to feel.
But the problem is, your brain is uneducated, so it gives you the easy way out. Feeling anxious over starting a business that could fail, so instead let’s watch some TV.
Obviously, there are no emotions in a video game, hence you’ll do what needs to be done in order to progress.
Step 2. The better you are feeling, the better you’re going to do
Another crucial element within The Sims is your “mood bar”. This is essentially your mood level. If it drops too low, your Sim will become depressed, lethargic and lazy. Even though you are in control, if your moods too low, your Sim won’t do what you tell it.
You know what happens when you tell a Sim who’s mood has hit rock bottom to work out or improve their skills? They will override you and do what they want. This is their “brain” controlling them through emotion.
On the flip side, when your Sim is in a super good mood, they can literally do anything and they do it better, longer and faster.
In real life, when you’re energized, healthy, well rested and just overall feeling great, this shows in all aspects of your life.
A great example of this is probably your morning routine.
You wake up and for most people, you don’t want to actually get up, so your body tells you that you’re still tired [emotion controlling you]. Most people “fix” this by waking up and grabbing coffee for that quick caffeine “hit” which temporarily boosts your energy.
The better you feel the better you’ll do. So as an entrepreneur you need to find a way of identifying your “mood level” then, you need to work out what affects it (negatively and positively) and keep on top of it.
- Distracted, not getting work done? Change your scenery.
- Lazy and lethargic? Identify the hours you work best, then create your life around it (sleeping different time, eating at different times and so on).
Once I was able to identify these things, I was able to increase the results I was getting in my business. By disassociating myself from my thoughts and emotions, I was able to “break away” and control myself better which then helps you to control the results you get in life and business.
Above are the two key takeaways I have from playing the game but it’s also clear that you pick-up other important life skills along the way, such as goal setting, time management, and problem-solving.
TL;DR: You are not your body/mind. You have the ultimate control, so don’t be a bitch to your body. Once you figure out how to “gain control” you will start achieving your goals.