Grateful 365 #34 – Report Cards, Likes, & Stage Finish Screens

report-cardIsn’t it strange how things we once dreaded in our youth transform into things we yearn for in adulthood? Naps for one. (Anyone else remember defiantly staying awake during naptime? I do!) Bathtime for another. (I wasn’t necessarily a smelly kid, but I avoided it like it might be a euphemism for Chinese water torture for awhile…)

The same, I’ve found, goes for report cards. Yeah, I didn’t much care for them back when the subjects were math and science- whether I was doing well or not. They just felt tedious. However, we now have ’employee reviews’ at work, and I hate to admit it, but I really enjoy it.

actual_1344360107To tangent briefly, there are a lot of theories on why people play video games. One of the primary reasons I’ve seen cited is the feeling we get from accomplishing things. Unlike most of life, video games give us instant, quantifiable feedback for doing well at a task- whether the grades are based on headshots, or coins, or rings, or time. As humans, this sets off a nice little chain reaction of neurons in our brains. It’s why some of us get off on leaderboards or feel compelled to “catch ’em all.” It feels good to see that screen that says “Hey! You did it! Good for you!” It makes us feel better than when we started and gives us motivation to keep going as we chase our next “success high.”

The same thing can be said for blog views and likes on facebook. Everytime you see that number go up, you feel like you won something. Pleasurable “I win” signals flood the brain for a bit, and when the neuron storm fades out, you’re left wanting to do it again. (And often! hurhur)

Facebook_like_thumbSo yeah, getting an “employee review,” especially when it went well, felt phenomenal. It was nostalgic yearning colliding headfirst with my need for positive feedback. If I had the ability, I might have run home and posted it on my refrigerator, truth be told.

So I’m grateful not just for the review, but for the underappreciated report cards that came before it and all the positive feedback analogues I’ve used since.
Thanks for keeping my brain meats happy~!
~all the love~

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