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December Self-Care Challenge Day 5: Game Night

Game night is a special night at my house. We hold it weekly for many reasons:

1) It’s a lot of fun

2) There is always laughter

3) memories are shared,

4) connection kindled or re-kindled

5) and I always get the chance to trounce my husband, nieces, nephews, and/or siblings (which let’s just say I’m due for a comeback) 😉

Game nights, before the pandemic were always held in person, usually at my folk’s house, and we played all sorts of games like Dominos, Ticket to Ride, Settlers of Catan, Pictionary, or any number of others.

Now however, things have been adapted and it is amazing the ways you can adapt game night to be just as fun.

Using zoom, Teams, or any other of the myriad of video chats out there, you can gather your friends and still play fun games such as Pictionary (using, Dungeons and Dragons, All Bad Cards (modeled on cards against humanity), or any number of others.

You can play on going games such as words with friends, or Serpentine.

We’ve had friends create new Dungeons and Dragon quests and groups, with people who have never even played before (such as myself); and others who have figured out how to play board games via online modules such as Table Top Simulator. It’s amazing how we have adapted over the past 18 plus months!

When I started this email, I put down the reasons why game night is so important to me, but those reasons are universal. We all desire connection and one of the best methods of creating that connection is through fun, team building, and challenging activities. Game night provides that opportunity which in turn is a great and fun method of self-care!

Thomas Frank, a YouTuber who has made a name for himself talking about methods and ways to create a happier life, made a list, and on that list, he includes the entry, “Plan and lead a high-density fun activity.”

While I know many of us wouldn’t classify game night as a high-density activity, during the pandemic we have all had to adjust and I for one think this really fits the bill.

So, Let’s say you want to start up a virtual game night with friends or family. How do you go about it during this time? Here are a few tips:

1) Plan the night: Either virtually or with those in your inner circle you feel safe gathering in person with.

a. Set up the time and place

b. Send out invitations (email or text)

c. Encourage everyone to have fun snacks on hand wherever they are joining from.

2) Invite people to join in. There’s a wide range of people you could choose from here:

a. Family,

b. Friends,

c. People you want to connect with more (say a friend or two that you haven’t spoken to in a while).

3) Pick out a selection of games. If you are struggling for ideas, you can look at some of the ones I mentioned above. Just remember

a. The format: Are you in person or virtual. Here is a link to virtual games you can try out. Traditional board games converted for online play and Totally virtual games to try.

b. Try to have 2-3 games on hand

c. OR you can all decide before game night which games to play and have them lined up 😊

4) Now have a blast!

The holiday season is a great time to build out a tradition of game night, so make some memories my friends!

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