My best friend Sani showed us how to play the game and now, we’re hooked. I never got to watch the animated series, nor play the console game. I was enthralled and bemused by a game that promotes outdoor activities such as walking (or jogging) and engages the players to share what pokemons they’ve hatched, which gyms they’ve fought in, and what level they’re at.
The last time I was so addicted at a game was when I played Candy Crush which I wrote about some years ago.
This article talks about life’s lessons reiterated by playing Pokemon. These lessons and realizations are not new to us, they’re our “hugot”, only being reminded to us ever so subtly by a game that’s supposed to super fun.
- NO MATTER HOW LOW YOU LOOK AT SOMEBODY, THEY WILL RUN AWAY IF THEY WANT TO, IF YOU DON’T TREAT THEM RIGHT, OR DON’T CATCH THEM WHEN THEY’RE ALREADY IN FRONT OF YOU. Case in point: When you’re catching a Rattata and you’ve spent razz berries on it, threw a dozen balls but it keeps breaking away. And eventually, after so many attempts at catching it, it will run away. “Daga na nga lang, iniwan ka pa” in the local dialect as it drives the message home more accurately. Wala sa itsura ang pang-iiwan. Minsan, ang ganda mo na, niloloko ka pa rin. More ironically, ang panget mo na, nangagaliwa ka pa! (Aray ko Bes). I’d try to translate that in English but it may not be accurate. Here, let me try anyway. “I’d been told I’m pretty, and yet he left for somebody (ugly or fat)”, or “The douchebag of a somb**** had been cheating on me all this time!” Wala e, that’s life.
- CHOOSE YOUR BATTLES. This sometimes happens when you know that you are only bound to get hurt, but you fight anyway because you want to gain experience, hone your skills and maybe eventually, find a flaw in your opponent that you can one day use to defeat him. But you can’t just fight any battle. You have to be strategic. You have to get something out of it. What good is battling and fainting, if, you never got any XP out of it? “Laban ka ng laban, nasasaktan ka lang naman. Wala ka namang nahihita dun.” Is what our best friend may tell us when we keep fighting when we knew from the start the battle has already been lost.
- CHEATING WILL NEVER BE OKAY. So you want to be better than everyone? So you want to take the fast lane to leveling up? You want to feel great, sought after, idolized? So you cheat because you think that’s the best way to achieve greatness and fame. Wrong. Very wrong. Cheating will cause you to lose what you think you’re already building. Not only that, it will also ban you for life. At first you will feel great about it. Like you’re the hottest person out there. Soon, that will fade. No one will want to be friends with you because you don’t play fair. No one will stick with you because if you cheat in a game, what else are you willing to do in real life, to get what you want? “Akala mo nakakapanloko ka ng iba pero sa totoo, sarili mo lang niloloko mo.” “Paggising mo isang araw, wag ka ng magtaka kung wala na pala lahat ng taong nagmahal sayo kasi, gago ka.” Lesson here is to work really hard to get what you want. You want to level up, walk some more. Make time. Connect. Be patient. Enjoy the journey.
- LEARN HOW TO SAVE. If you want to buy / get something that you really want, but can’t afford it right now, then you have to find the means. You always complain that all you get is a Pidgey. But you won’t get to have a Pidgeot without it (unless you hatched it). It’s like, why would I save 10 pesos a day if what I need is a thousand pesos? So catch all the Pidgeys, the Caterpies, the Widdles, and the Spearows because together, they will become what you need. Not necessarily what you want. “Puro nalang ibon, higad at daga, wala na bang iba?” But remember that without a caterpillar, you wan’t have a butterfly.
- LEARN WHAT TO SPEND, AND WHEN. Since we only get incubators, lucky eggs, lure modules and incense every 5 levels, then we have to be strategic when using / spending them. It’s like waiting patiently for a seat sale to go to Japan, or for the clearance sale to buy the DSLR you want. Timing, is everything. Remember that the higher your level, the harder it is to level up. Just like when you think you’re earning more, your lifestyle sub-consciously changes. You buy more signature coffee because you feel you already deserve it. You buy more things even at impulse because now you feel you can already afford them. Truth is, the higher your salary, the less you save. So use your resources wisely, wag maging “waldas”.
- MASTER THE ART OF EVOLVING. This stems from lesson 4. Because you gather experiences, pick up and save coins / loose change, you will have the ability to evolve and become something / someone greater without cheating your way into it. Evolving is one of the greatest feelings for me when playing Pokemon. It’s like a reward for not ignoring the small things. It’s like, taking a relationship to the next level because you give importance to the small things. Like how much she hates it when you talk and it seems like your eyes and mind are wandering. It’s knowing that she does not like the smell of salted egg so you make a sacrifice of not eating it when she’s around. It’s remembering what her favorite cup is at a local cafe. Small things mean big. Take it from me. But not only that, evolving also means being better than who you used to be, stronger even. Be a better person as you grow because that’s what experience teaches you. Be better not because people want you to be better. Be better because you deserve to become the better version of yourself. It’s like a former bully meeting the bullied, saying “Hi, Sir. I am here because I would like to be one of the team leads in your growing company….”
- LEARN WHEN TO WALK AWAY. Sometimes, while you want to “catch ’em all”, you can’t. When you’re in a moving vehicle and you are made to choose between catching a Weedle and getting balls from a Pokestop, you decide what you need more. You don’t get what you see “first”. Or, when you only have 10 balls left and Zubat keeps “breaking free”, then you have to learn to tap the icon that means “walk away”. When what you’re doing does not benefit you, walk away. When you’re no longer happy, walk away. Even when people say “sayang” because remember, they’re not the ones going through the sorrow, or the pain when a Blastoise appears and…you have no more balls. Right?
- BE AT THE RIGHT PLACE AT THE RIGHT TIME. Where there is lure (at a Pokestop), so should you be. It allows you to get more balls and other items, and catch more Pokemons. At work, you should also have that lure. Make yourself a Pokestop of positivity. Make your colleagues feel happy being beside / near you. Be the first option when bosses are looking for someone to groom. That should answer the question, “how to be you po?”. Orayt.
- DON’T MIX GAMES WITH LIFE. While Pokémon Go is a really fun and engaging game, please put your phone downs when with the family, friends, or at work. It cannot, will not and was never intended to replace the real people in our lives. Don’t risk sleeping outside if the wife complains you’re playing too much Pokémon. 🙂
- CHARGE AND RECHARGE. In life, the daily routine can become dull and boring, or too exhausting. We all deserve to recharge. Lesson though, while it’s good to use powerbanks while still playing, give your devices the rest it deserves. Anything that is in excess will always be bad. Rather than having to buy another phone, let it rest until fully charged then play again. It is the same as disconnecting from work when you’re on a vacation. Parake na nag bakasyon ka kung sasagot ka din ng emails sa beach?
Do you have any more real-life lessons and #hugot to add to the list?