How Something Small Made a Very Big Impact
Sometimes when you’re in a very bad place, reassurance can come from the most unlikely of places. For me, that place was Pocket Planes, a Tycoon-type game I play on my Nexus 7 tablet.
For those that don’t know, Pocket Planes is a game that originated on Apple, then made its way to the Android market. The premise of the game is simple: You own a small airline, and you have to turn it into a big airline. If you’re interested, there is more info here: http://www.polygon.com/2012/11/14/3590214/pocket-planes-guide-how-to-build-the-best-airline
In the game, you can be part of a “flight crew:” There are certain events to fly things to certain places, and your flight crew is the group that you participate in these events with. In the menu, you have access to your flight crew’s ranking against other crews, and your personal ranking within your crew.
Now for why this matters to me: As I only got the game a few days ago, this is the first event I’m participating in. My crew, Reddit, is number 7 in the world, currently with 4,691 jobs done. I am number 15 in my crew, with 108 jobs done.
“So why does this matter?” I hear you muttering to yourself. Well, it probably doesn’t. However, the number 8 flight crew in the world has 4633 as I write this, meaning that without my 108, the Reddit flight crew would be number 8 in the world, instead of number 7. Is this a huge deal? No. But as someone who lives his life with clinical depression, who feels like he doesn’t really matter to anyone a lot of the time, it becomes a huge deal.
Those 108 jobs I’ve completed, and my being the difference between my team being number 7 in the world, and number 8, are not terribly important. However, in a world where I spend a lot of my time feeling completely insignificant, they are a big deal; and are just one more thing working with me, when it feels like most things are working against me.
So, my challenge to you, the reader, is this: If you see an opportunity to make someone feel important, in no matter how big or small a way, be sure to take it. I’m not saying to go out of your way to make every single person you meet feel extremely important, though– as great as that would be, it would start to become time-consuming and stressful, and the things you want to do would start taking the back seat. This would not be good, because we as humans need to put ourselves first, (evolutionarily, this is because food was scarce for almost all of the evolutionary life of Homo Sapien, so for awhile, if you let another person get the food, you probably didn’t eat for awhile) else we’ll get super stressed and our mental health will suffer. I’m just saying, try to make it a goal to make at least one person per day feel important. You never know how much of an affect that’ll have, even if it was something very small.
Thank you Mobage, developers of Pocket Planes among other games I haven’t played yet but plan to, for providing this opportunity. Consider me a loyal customer, although you already could have, because Pocket Planes is my favorite game right now anyway.