Gamification: my every day use

As I walked home from work I counted my steps, “58, 59, 60”.
I looked down at my wrist, to see how many steps I had to go until I hit 5,000 steps. Only 13 to go! I was so excited to receive my badge today, for achieving this goal- not my best. Usually I would achieve my 10,000 badge step called ‘Sneakers’, but instead, I was about to unlock the ‘Boat Shoe’ badge.

So why was I so excited to receive this badge? I mean, it was just a digital sticker, on an app, right? Well, actually no! My mind thought was completely different to this! But I have to be honest, at first, I was not interested in buying this digital device. In my mind it was just a waste of money that people bought, just to ‘fit in’ and be like everyone else; it was just a fad.

It wasn’t until people at work started wearing them, and created a contest around it. The tally board, leader list, and constant questions like,

“…how many steps are you on today? Oh I have more than you!”

Screen Shot 2017-04-15 at 11.58.26 pm.png
fitbit by Ellie (CC BY-SA 2.0)
Screen Shot 2017-04-15 at 11.44.05 pm.png
 Fitbit by Mike Mozart (CC BY 2.0)
Screen Shot 2017-04-15 at 11.47.06 pm.png
  Fitbit by Global Panorama (CC BY-SA 2.0)

This made me want a Fitbit, to see what all the excitement was about! I wanted to be able to connect with my work group on this level too; my only option was to purchase this digital device. And, turns out, it was one of the best digital devices I have ever bought!

After working the device out, I found out some interesting things included in the whole ‘gaming’ experience. This Fitbit device, was actually an online community. I was able to post achievements online (and boast about my badges too!) People were interested, they wanted to know how many steps people achieved during the day. This was an actual popular online community- one in which I was actively involved with.

The next thing I loved about this device, was unlocking content; achieving my goals meant being rewarded by badges! There are 9 types of different badges available rewarded by the amount of steps taken daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly; Step Badges, Distance Badges, Daily Climb Badges, Lifetime Climb Badges and Weight Badges. Each category of badges, broke down into bigger sub groups, where achievements would be unlocked with the amount of steps taken during the day.

I was addicted to this idea; that I was getting rewarded for being active! These fitbit badges, gamified my process of walking. Feeling keen to start my day walking (and finding my self walking from room to room at home just to gain steps) to the end of the day feeling accomplished; a sense of achievement and pride was associated with this device. This was a fun, and exciting experience for tracking my fitness, getting motivated daily, and to walk that little bit more than usual.

I would definitely recommend this digital device to anyone. It is a great thing to have for motivation, health and wellness, being interactive, and even just for getting involved with gaming!

Challenge yourself! You won’t regret it.

-E

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