Monthly Archives: March 2021

How to start saving money effectively, Pay yourself first


Do you want more money? Yes of course. Me too! We all do. I want to help teach you how to start saving and get in control of your money. There is an easy way to save.

When people they say that they want a budget it usually means that they want money saved. They want to feel confident and get rid of the stress that is always around money. I want to show you how this works!

Paying yourself is the first step of getting in control of your money.

Most of the investing and money advice books I have encountered always seem to assume one thing that is never specifically mentioned. They assume that we have money to invest. They assume that we are already good at budgeting, managing, and saving our money.

I think that’s why most people make the conclusion that investing is only for the rich. We believe that investing is only for people with extra money to play around with. So what about us commoners who are living paycheck to paycheck?

If you are interested in learning to invest, I highly recommend Quit Like A Millionaire by Kristy Shen. It is the book that inspired me to believe that we can take control of our money situation and finish rich. Her advice is really simple and easy to understand. She makes money management and investing simlpe for noobs like me.

How do we start managing money?!

Saving can be easy if we make it automatic. Set up an automatic transfer to put a small part of your paycheck into your savings every month. If it is automatically saved, you don’t have to worry about it.

With direct deposits of paychecks and all the other payment services, you do have money coming regularly. In order to start saving, we need our money to go into savings regularly.

This is what you do. Take 10% of each paycheck and immediately put it into savings. If you feel that you can’t save 10% maybe try 5% or even just 1% a month. Take a percentage from every check and save it! The key is to save something.

The whole point is to have money saved when you need it. Even if you can only save $20 a month, that’s and extra $240 a year that you didn’t have before! Think of how much you could have in 10 years from now. Or 20!

When you are living paycheck to paycheck, there is always some stress about it. You feel like there is nothing in your account left over for yourself. You feel like all your money goes to everyone but yourself. You feel like you’ll never be in control of your money because you never have any money to control.

If you make the decision to pay yourself first, you will have some money to control. Being in control of $20 a month is way better than being in control of $0 a month! If you want to start controlling your money, pay yourself first.

Getting good at saving is the first step towards being in control of your money. Paying yourself first is the best way that I have found to start saving regularly.

a foolproof budget

This is what paying yourself first looks like. It goes into a savings account before you even get a chance to spend it. The money is automatically saved before you even miss it.

The money that you add to your savings is your money for you to keep. Do not spend this money. This is for savings only. This is about having money for yourself so you won’t ever be broke again.

Paying yourself first will create an automatic budget without you having to worry about it month by month or bill by bill. This takes away all the stress, worry and anxiety about trying to keep whatever few pennies you have left over at the end of the month. Budgeting simply means putting money where you want it to go. And savings is the first place you want it.

Paying yourself before you pay any bills or other expenses puts you in control of your own money. You’ll have the knowledge and assurance that you do actually have some money left over at the end of the month, because you saved it first. You don’t have to rely on searching for scraps in your own bank account after every one else is paid.

We pay ourselves first to ensure that we do have something for ourselves. We will then have the comfort in knowing that we have money left over even after we pay all of our bills.

If you want to loose the game of money, start by spending it all and don’t keep any for yourself. Being broke means always spending. Give all your money to others, waste all your money. Pay all your bills and expenses and since you want to stay broke, do not keep any for yourself. Spend what is left over on junk that you won’t use. Spend what little is left over on things that will start collecting dust in your basement. Most people let their money control them instead of taking control themselves.

Sounds kind of silly doesn't it. But that is how the majority of people operate. They spend everything they have and then wonder why they don’t have any money left.

Create a payment plan that pays yourself. The entire system was built on loans and payment plans for a reason. Paying for mortgages and your Netflix account over time is how the money system works. If we didn’t pay over time, there would be no money ever available for anyone.

Payment over time works for you too, not just the companies that send you bills every month. Payment over time works when you pay yourself.

Cash flow is necessary for survival in any society that operates with money. Payment plans and other structures are in place so we have control of our money. It allows everyone to tell our money where to go.

Your money should be saved automatically before you get a chance to spend it on an eating binge or your next visit to the comic book store.

if you don't save, you'll never have any money

If you want to start keeping your money, and saving effectively, you need to start paying yourself first. Pay yourself with your own money. Stop giving your money away.

You’ll be amazed at how much you can actually save up in just a few months by paying yourself first.

Automation is the key, and the entire point of David Bachs book, the Automatic Millionaire. I didn’t look at this book for a long time because the title threw me off, I thought “oh that’s only for millionaires.” The point of his book is the exactly the opposite. Start small. Make automatic payments to yourself and your investing, then it all grows automatically.

Make automatic savings a thing in your life. Then once you have enough money saved, you can start investing it and making it grow even more for you. Get this book if you are looking for more control over your finances.

When your savings plan and budget is automated, you don’t have to worry about keeping tabs on it. Make the transfer to your savings automated. This is vitally important.

Making your savings automatic is important because if it isn’t put away in a savings account, it will end up getting spent somewhere else. When you need an extra $20 for lunch, or your kids want a new toy, that money goes fast.

The trick is to be able to to both. Save money first, then buy that toy that they are screaming about. If that extra $20 a month is in savings, it won’t get spent the next time you want to drive through for some chicken nuggets.

Don't wait until you have "more money", start saving now

Your savings plan needs to be automated because we always believe that we can save more next month. We delude ourselves into thinking that there will be times in the future when things will be easier. You keep telling yourself that “Things will be better next month, I promise”

We think there will be times in the future when we will have more money to save. The real truth is that this future never comes!

 Waiting for the future is thinking backwards. The only way you will ever have money in the future is if you are saving in the present.

A new emergency always pops up, every month. One month it’s for car repairs, next month, an unexpected doctors visit. But it’s okay. You’ll just save the month after that… Wrong! That month will inevitably bring you a new expense that you didn’t plan for. Every single month for the rest of your life. The cycle is endless.

The only way that you’ll break the cycle is if you save it this month. Save it now!

If people aren’t starting the saving process now, chances are that they’ll never end up saving anything at all. If you are making excuses about how you have to pay for everything else but yourself, you will never be able to keep anything. And yes, they are all excuses.

Money that is saved today is more money that you can enjoy tomorrow.

Automating your savings ensures that your money gets saved today, instead of a fictional future that will never come. Pay yourself first and automate it. This is the only way you will actually have money for yourself in the future.

Paying yourself should always be your most important expense

Your future self, your peace of mind, your control over your money, is the first bill you want to pay every single time.

Why let others decide where your money goes when you have the power to decide before anyone else can? It’s your money! Keep it for yourself first! Make this decision, for yourself. Save for yourself before your money goes to someone else who will gladly keep it for themselves.

Most people believe that they could be rich “Some day”. But we know that some day never comes unless we take action now. We will never see money some day unless we start planning and saving today.

Stop telling yourself that you’ll do better tomorrow because we know that a better tomorrow starts today.

If you want money in your future, you have to start keeping it now. A better future means planning for it in the present.

If action isn’t taken today, you’ll still be just as poor as you were yesterday. 

You’ll never know how to manage money unless you start practicing and learning now. Just like learning anything else in this world, managing money take practice. If you can start practicing on just $20 a month, you’ll become a master money manager in no time.

If you aren’t starting now, you’ll be just as poor next year as you are today. You’ll be just as poor as you are now in ten years down the road. So start now.

The biggest difference between successful people and poor people is knowledge. Poor people act like they know everything and stopped learning in high school. This is why I think there are so many people that make poor adults.

If you want to be in control of your money and have any chance of finishing rich, it is imperative that you educate yourself and grow as a person

High-level characters, people who can manage real life, are always learning everything that they can to create a better life for themselves. Test everything out and don't be afriad to try new things. Find out what works for you and your specific situation.

If you are interested in more books about controlling your money, take a look at some of my book recommendations on budgeting and investing.

I also talk about some books that help with the mindset and philosophy required to take more control of your finances.

Thank You!

Here at we want to give our appreciation and support to gamers everywhere. Our mission is to inspire creativity and help everyone enjoy the best life possible.

Disclosure: I am an affiliate of and I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase with no extra cost to you.

The Gamers Guide to Life. A strategy guide for the real world


Why isn't there a strategy guide for life? Isn't this the most important game we will ever play? What can we do right now to start winning in the game of life? 

I'm writing what I call the Gamers Guide to Life becuase for most of my time here, I have felt directionless and useless. I am still scared to take action. Most of the time we allow fear and guilt to control what we choose to do instead of choosing something that sparks joy.

I know others can feel the same way. So this guide is for the nerds and gamers who want to see reality in a new way. This is for people stuggling to take control of their life and maybe together we can choose a better adventure.

seeing life as a game

life, in terms of a game, is intelligently desinged an open-world sandbox style game. You have a multide of choices and quests that you can take on and complete for your own character advancement. The choices you get are only limited to your imagination, just like a good tabeltop RPG. The more quests you finish, the more leveled up you'll become and more options will become open to you. 

Seeing life as a game means that we have to understand that life is not a linear quest. It will never be a game where someone tells you what to do and you simply do it. Beacause goals and desires for each character, each person, is completely different. 

Life is the only game where we will have the most control and the most options. This means we can make the game of life into any expereince that we want!

Character creation

We have to take control of life. When we take control, we have the power to create whatever character we want to be, and change our character when we don't like who we are at the moment. We only get one lifetime, however we have an infinite amount of possibilities about what kind of character we can be.

Taking control means we get to choose our own story line, we get to choose which quests to take that will actully make the game of life fun for us. We don't want to end up doing meaningless quests for other people or get stuck in a job that we don't want. 

The game of life functions best when you take control and make it work for you. Design the character you want to be and create the life of adveture that you want to go on. 

This Is Your Section title

You have to choose the meaning of your life. The quests and adventures that you want to go on. No one else can choose that for you. No game designer or dungeon master will never truly know what is in your heart of hearts. No one else can tell you what you enjoy and what you want out of life. No one else can decide what you want out of your personal gaming experience. Because the experience is different for each person.

You get to choose the life you want. You get to go on the quests and adventures that are only important to you.

We need to shift our thinking about life and see it an open wold journey. Life is the biggest sandbox that we are lucky enough to play in. We have to stop waiting for a manager, or a parent or, an NPC to tell us what to do and create a story and experience that is wholly unique to ourselves.

Life isn't linear, there isn't just one answer or just one meaning to find. That meaning is different for everyone. This is whay there are so many games, so many types of classes and characters because the gaming experience is just a little bit different for each player. 

Find the quests, and make goals that will serve your real life character in the best way at this moment in time.

Thank You!

Here at we want to give our appreciation and support to gamers everywhere. Our mission is to inspire creativity and help everyone enjoy the best life possible.

If you are looking for inspiration on being more creative take a look at the War of Art book

If you grok what I'm throwing down, you might like Finding Meaning in the Game of Life

Finding meaning in the Game of Life (part2) Leveling Up

shiny math rocks!

the more you play, the easier it gets

    “Action may not always bring happiness, but there is no happiness without action”
    -Benjamin Disraeli, former British prime minister.

I’m not saying that moving forward is easy. If you are depressed with no energy and no motivation, it is really hard. It is hard to move, hard to think, hard to care. But doing the hard thing is the only way that we gain experience points. So we have to keep playing in order to level up in the game of life. One small battle at a time.

One small battle at a time is your level 1 pokemon using tackle over and over again. It’s killing the low level rats in the sewers until you have grown enough to take on the giant spiders. Leveling up takes time and we all have to be patient with ourselves when we know we aren’t strong enough to beat the boss monsters of life.

Life works as a marathon, not a short sprint. Life is not a speed run to the finish. You need some time to try new things, experiment, and test out what works for you.

Having a life means being in the game of life. The only way you can enjoy life is to play the game as an active participant.

We have to keep fighting, we continue to get up every morning until we find something to get up for. We practice listening to our intuition and our desires until we find that wonderful thing that brings us joy. Once we find that, life gets a little better.

Then, you start taking care of yourself just a little bit more. You start planning for a future so you can make even more exciting things happen. You plan for excitement and you actively seek it out. Then things get a little more easier because you have a little bit more energy.

Planning for excitement is how you plan for a life that you want.

Once you know what you want and start working towards that, other people will know you for who you truly are. They will understand you because of what you want, then suddenly you have a support system of people like you and life feels a little easier. People will see you for what you are passionate about. The ones who understand, will become your friends and found family. You now have an adventuring party that will be there for you.

As, you slowly move forward, day by day, you start to take a little more care of yourself. You realize that life gets easier because you have slowing been gaining more and more experience points.
You have gotten better at life, and so life becomes that much better.

You have been leveling up this whole time!

You find out that creating a life for yourself is actually worth it. Now that you are a little better at life, you realize that sometimes you want to get up in the morning. You want to plan for your future. You want to build better relationships with friends and loved ones.

You find out that you actually do have energy to move forward because there is so much stuff that you want to do!

The game of life is the ultimate challenge

“link a hard task to something you care about. Continue asking questions that start with why.
Why are you doing this?”

- Charless Duhigg, Smarter, Faster, Better

Some people enjoy the game of life because they know it is a challenge, just like any game, we face challenges, solve problems, and create happiness for people who ask us for help by giving us quests.

Ignoring the challenges of life, means you aren’t a part of life. Ignoring the obstacles and challenges in your life means that you are not playing the game of life. Without being a part of the game, you will never be able to win or find meaning and happiness.

We realize that somewhere along the way that we need to take care of the hard stuff first. We face the biggest challenge that is threatening us. When we do, we see that the game of life becomes that much easier afterwords.

Taking care of the hard stuff means slaying your demons right now instead of living in fear of them constantly reappearing and attacking. Slay those demons now, so you can rest easy knowing that they won’t try to come back and bite you in the ass tomorrow. That is how you start gaining real world experience points.

Take care of the problems you have right now in order to level up. Take care of the problems now so your future self won’t be so stressed out and anxious. You’ll have a lot less to worry about and more to be excited about.

An adventurous life is building something out of your life that you can be proud of, something you can look forward too. The real adventure is creating an amazing and successful exsistance for yourself and your loved ones. Adventure is taking care of yourself so that you can survive another day. So you can continue playing the game day after day.

it's okay to make mistakes, learn from them

We make a choice to defeat our enemies in battle, and we never beat ourselves up when we think we fail. Every time we think that we did something wrong, we get back up and try again. Trying again is the best we can do because we do better the next time.

Messing up is okay. Messing up is human. Making mistakes is required in order to learn and move forward. Some people are paralyzed with fear because they don’t realize that mistakes are inevitable. They don't allow themselves to accept the fact that mistakes happen, no matter how hard you try. The trick is to get back up and try again. We have to accept that mistakes are a part of life, a part of the ongoing adventure.

When we choose not to try, we are choosing not to win.

Mistakes are the normal, natural way that we lean and grow. Without mistakes, we can’t learn. Without free will, we can’t adapt and learn from experiences. Without mistakes, we can never level up in the game of life.

Mistakes will always happen. The question is how we react to those mistakes. We can choose to learn from them, or we can choose to beat ourselves up and feel like crap. Those are the only choices we get. Choose wisely.

It is okay to loose a few battles. The goal isn’t to win right away, the goal is to get better than you were yesterday. Don’t compare yourself to others. Compare yourself to who you were yesterday. The goal is to get back up and try again. One step at a time. One change of tactics at a time.

Do a little bit better than you did the day before. Gain one more experience point than you did last time. Lose a battle or two without feeling bad or giving up. Lose because that is the best way you learn.

We learn the pattern of our enemies, and we learn the flow of battle, so that we can try again with renewed strength and a better strategy.

When we choose to lay down and stop trying is the only time we fail. We only loose if we give up. Getting back up and trying again is the difference between winning and loosing. Trying again means learning more, and learning more means leveling up.

Leveling up, growing as a person, can only happen when we accept our mistakes and allow ourselves to learn from them.

How to Find what sparks joy

Do we even know what makes us happy? Have you ever focused on what truly gets you excited about life?

A simple way to start figuring out what you truly enjoy is to answer 3 questions. The trick here is to allow yourself to feel happy about the things you love doing. We need to let ourselves feel good about creating a better world that we want to live in. We have been conditioned by society and experience that makes us feel guilty about what we truly enjoy. 

We alwys hear B.S. like "Playing games is childish," "Feeling emotions are bad" "Feeling miserable and crappy is the ony way to succeed" "Work hard and don't think for yourself" None of that crap is helpful or supportive. Those are fake rules that were made up by players who don't understant the true meaning of the game of life. So when you answer the following questions, be open to how you feel and allow your excitement, creativity, and passion to flow. 

   Question 1. If you had infinite time and money, what would you do with it? What would a day of your life look like with infinite resources? What would a whole month look like? How about an entire year? Or Five years? 

Answering this question and envisioning a future that you actually care about is how you create your goals. Create the quest lines that you need to acomplish in order to create the ideal version of your life. Take the time to think about as much detail as you can. Where are you working? Who do you work with? What projects are you excited about getting to work on? Where are you going to dinner? Where are you doing volunteer work? What type of people are you helping in your work? Who are you spending time with? What do you do on an ideal weekend or a simple day off?

   Question 2. What do your ideal relationships look like? How do you support your loved ones? How do your friends and community work together? How do people treat each other in your ideal version of the world?

I think this question is important because humans are a social species. We cannot survive in the modern world without being a part of a family or a community. When we have love, support and a sense of belonging, life gets easier. We know that someone will have our backs when we are scared. We are able to take more risks and get out of our comfort zones when we know that we have support from friends, family and collegues. 

   Question 3. What is the ideal world that you want to live in? How would you go about creating this ideal version of reality? What would you say to inspire people to help create that better world?

Creating your own world means you are in charge of your exsistance. You are the dungeon master and player in you game of life. Create a world where your character can live long and prosper. Make your own version of the game where you can thrive. You can create a better world and you can make a livng doing something you love. You are allowed to take up space in this world and make the best life you can. 

Now that you have an idea of where you want to go and what quests you want to tackle, you can start leveling up in the directions that you want to go. You probably already have an idea of what you will need to learn in order to get to where you want to go. The faster you level up, the faster you can be who you want to be. 

Write out your answers to these questions and look at them every day. Keeping it written gives you a quest log to follow so you won't get off track from what you really want. It is so easy to get distracted and take on things that aren't leading you to where you want to be. Read your answers every day, this will keep you more focused and excited to move forward. If you keep your ideal life in the front of your mind, you'll be more inclined to work toward that goal.

If you still don't have a good idea of where to start, make it simple.

If you want to be a musician, join a local band or take some more training classes. Volunteer or audition to preform with people you want to work with.  You will be in the environment you want to be in, you'll be practicing and learning more. You'll get to spend time with people who are just as passionate as you are about music. This is how you get started. Get into the community that you want to be in even if it's not a perfect fit. We have to start somewhere. Just the act of starting will begin your adventure and get you moving forward. 

If you love the outdoors, you could find a job at a national park, any groups who are working torward the same goals that you are. Volunteer to help plant trees or other work that excites you. Get yourself into the environment that will help you to move forward toward what makes you excited.

Thank You!

Here at we want to give our appreciation and support to gamers everywhere. Our mission is to inspire creativity and help everyone enjoy the best life possible.

Disclosure: I am an affiliate of and I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase with no extra cost to you.

Finding Meaning in the Game of Life (part 1)

shiny math rocks!
shiny math rocks!

How do we find the the meaning of life? Why do we spend so much time wondering what to do and how to live? Why is this question so hard for people to answer?  When I found the answer, it was a lot simpler than expected.

Feeling empty and pointless sucks. Feeling useless and tired is no way to live. Fighting depression and fighting the urge to give up is the worst.

Being depressed means using up all of your spell slots before you even get up in the morning. You have no energy to take care of life. No energy and no motivation puts you in a bad place. Once you are in that place, you feel more and more worthless and empty.

So what is the point?
Why are we here?  Why are we playing the game of life?
How do we find meaning when we feel like nothing matters?

       “There is a theory which states that if ever anyone discovers exactly what the Universe is for and  why it is here, it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable.
         There is another theory which states that this has already happen
                ― Douglas Adams, Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy

The meaning of life is to find what makes you happy. Find what ignites your passion and energizes your soul. Excitement is the meaning. If you feel like nothing matters, then you are probably not doing anything that excites you.

              “What is the opposite of happiness? Sadness? no. Just as love and hate are two sides of the same coin, so are happiness and sadness. Crying out of happiness is a perfect illustration of this.  The opposite of love is indifference, and the opposite of happiness is -- here's the clincher –  Boredom.”
                -Tim Ferriss, The 4-hour Work Week

The opposite of happiness is boredom. That is why Indifference and boredom make you more lazy and uncaring. Excitement is the opposite of boredom, which is why I beleive that finding happiness is the meaning of life.

When you find a part of life that you love, and you embrace it, you will never be bored again. 

life is an open world game

The game of life is and open world, sandbox adventure story where we have the freedom and the power to choose what quests to go on, and what stories to tell. Life is the ultimate rpg where we get to create the life of our main characters, ourselves. We choose how our story will play out.

Life is a free-form storytelling role-playing game. Therefore, We have to be able to tell our own story.

If life was a linear, railroaded game we would never be able to choose or create anything.

The meaning is being able to create your own adventure. The meaning is finding something that excites you enough to keep you moving forward. Something that makes you, and only you truly happy. It doesn’t matter how crazy or outlandish your wants are as long as you choose something that make you happy.

The key is to find or create your own goal and focus your energy into it.

Embracing your happiness means that you will always be a part of the adventure of life.

 We usually feel like life is satisfying or boring. We feel like life never gives us what we want in order to be happy. The trick is to stop waiting for life to happen because it never will. life only happens when you join the game. Life happens when you actively choose to play the game and become part of the adventure.

When we feel like nothing matters, we have to be able to find or create something that matters to us.

The meaning you are looking for doesn’t have to be perfect or flawless, but it should feel right for your ideal version of the life that you want. You can always change your goals and your meanings along the way.

    "Everybody arrives on this planet with uniqe desires, gifts, and talents and as you journey through life,         your job is to discover what yours are. to nurture them and to bloom into the most authentic, gleeful           and badassiest version of yourself."-Jen Sincero You are a Badass At Making Money

Finding the meaning of life is as simple as understanding what you enjoy, and then creating a life around that enjoyment. As long as we aren’t harming ourselves or others, we have the freedom to create a joyful life.

It's okay to keep it simple

If the idea of finding happiness and excitement seems too overwhelming it is totally okay to keep your meaning simple.

Creating an entire life can feel daunting and way too much work. I know it did for me for most of my life.

After the Lord of the Rings movie trilogy came out, I knew in my heart that Peter Jackson would eventually make a Hobbit movie. For years, seeing the new hobbit movie was my reason to keep going. That is the simple thing that I was able to latch onto. Because real life was too big and scary.

By the time those movies did come out, I was ultimately disappointed. I had very high expectations and I build up that excitement in my mind for years. It wasn’t the experience that I wanted, but by that time I had found other reasons to keep going. The point is that I kept living and moving forward. I kept going simply for a movie that I was excited about.

Your reason to keep going could be something as simple as waiting to see the new Dune movie coming out in 2021. The reason you get up in the morning might be as simple as taking care of someone you love, including yourself.

        “Find a place where there is joy, and the joy will burn out the pain.”
          -Joseph Campbell. The Power of Myth

Finding your joy could be playing that new d&d character that you just created. Or a new cosplay that you want to try out. Find your meaning by connecting to some cool people you meet at the next convention.

Find what you are passionate about. It could be the next book in your favorite series or the next episode of your favorite show.

Your reason to get up in the morning could be living another day so that you will be one day closer to the next concert you want to go to, or another day closer to the next video game release that you are excited about.

You need a reason to get out of bed. So why not make it simple? You need to embrace something you enjoy to push yourself into getting your pants on every day.

It is absolutely and totally okay for your reason to be simple. Even if it is just getting coffee with a friend. Allow that coffee date to move you forward one more day.

Finishing that Game of Thrones book series can totally be why you get through another day.

Choose your own adventure

The question is not why are we here. The question we should be asking is “What gets me excited?” This answer is different for each and every one of us. Only we can answer that for ourselves.

The meaning of life is finding happiness. We should allow ourselves to be happy first and as often as we can. Choosing to be happy creates a happy life.

The question could also be “What makes me happy, and how am I going to fight for that happiness everyday?” Fighting for what makes you happy is how you determine your story line.

Fighting for what makes you happy is the main quest of your life. Fighting for what makes you happy is when the adventure comes. Fighting for what makes you happy is the journey that we all must seek for ourselves. Then the adventure itself becomes the meaning.

There are as many meanings to life as you choose to give it. We have ton

      “You were born with an inner guidance system that tells you when you are on or off purpose by the amount of joy you are experiencing. The things that bring you the greatest joy are in alignment with  your purpose.”
       -Jack Canfield, The Success Principles and co creator of
       Chicken Soup for the Soul

The meaning in this game of life is to learn and grow. The more you learn, the more things you can find to get excited about. The more you learn and grow, the more you are leveled up and can handle more challenges within the game of life.

You gain more experience, the more time you spend learning. That is your ongoing quest. When you get better, life gets easier to handle.

The meaning of life is the challenge of surviving another day. The meaning of life is simply to live for a lifetime. the meaning is to stand up and tell life that you can beat it’s game. Living life is the adventure, living life gives us the excitement that we crave.

And when we are sad or scared, we fight for our lives to create even more happiness. We fight for tomorrow because we know for a fact that tomorrow has even more happiness waiting for us.

Choose happiness instead of despair. Choose excitement instead of boredom. This is why we have free will, so we can choose a life that we want.

Explore the idea of free will. We get the gift of choice.
Without choice, we can’t choose joy.
       We wouldn’t be able to forge our own paths.

       -Joeseph Campbell

do what makes you happy because no one else can

It doesn’t matter how talented or skilled or impressive you are about your passions. What matters is that your passions make you happy. What matters is the life you choose for yourself.

Do not allow others to make you feel bad or ashamed about any of your pleasures. As long as you aren’t harming anyone else, you can do what you will.

What matters is the thing that will inspire you to get out of bed to enjoy another day.

You do what makes you happy because you want to do it. You do it because it gives you joy.

I know I’m repeating myself, because I want to get this point across in as many ways as I can. Choose an authentic life that makes you happy.

Find something to get excited about and then go do it. It doesn’t have to be some grand plan. It doesn’t have to be a huge overwhelming goal of becoming rich and famous. Find something simple that you can do today.

Allow yourself to find your bliss in simple things. Playing with friends. Hanging out with loved ones. Going to the movies. Catching up on your favorite tv show. Do whatever you enjoy.

Create paintings, writing, or cosplay. Dance, run, exercise. Go for a peaceful hike in the forest. Smell those damn roses. Remodel your home. Plant your garden. Do these things for yourself for the sole purpose of enjoying it.

Do it because you care about your happiness. No one else has to care, this is for you. This is how you create and enjoy the life that you want.

You don’t need to be a talented artist. If you want to knit an ugly Christmas sweater, then do it! Do it simply because you want to. Make an ugly quilt if you want! No one is stopping you from doing what you love! Do what you want to simply because it's fun. You don't need any other reason to do what you enjoy.

Write your fan-fiction because it brings you happiness. Create your original characters because you like them! No one else has to like them.

This is for you! This is your life, your creation, your joy.

If all you want to do is survive another week so you can play D&D again, that’s great! You have something to look forward to! You have chosen something that makes you happy. You have chosen something to live for.

take a look at part 2 of finding meaning in the game of life

Thank You!

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How to create memorable NPCs for your Dungeons and Dragons game.


Non player characters aren't just cannon fodder or set pieces for your players to destroy. Memorable NPCs can be utilized for any narrative purpose or game play needs. NPCs will usually be the ones to create conflict, and move your dungeons and dragons story forward. 

Prepare your NPCs core emotion or personality type

Describe the characters main emotion in one word. Descriptors can be really simple. Nervous, confident, joyful, grumpy, sad, aloof, indifferent, etc.

 Once you have a specific word to describe an NPC you can base your entire performance on that one word.

If you would rather improvise during the game, you can prepare a list of random descriptors and personalities to have on hand. You can also prepare a list of random names because we always need to make a new NPC mid game.

How does your NPC character deal with others?

Another way to describe your characters is how they operate in a transaction or negotiation. Are they givers, takers, or matchers?

A giver would offer whatever they can to help and support his friends without expecting anything in return. A giver is happy to work as a team without getting credit for himself specifically.

A taker will manipulate and lie to get whatever they want. A taker will always steal credit for achievements and always keep the glory for himself.

A matcher is someone who will always repay a favor for a favor. If someone does a favor for a matcher, he will feel like he owes them a favor.

This character building idea was taken from reading Give and Take by Adam Grant.

What is your NPCs goal?

NPC goals can be really simple. especially if the character isn't an integral part of your story.

 A farmer wants a new plow that works better. A blacksmith who is in love with the prince. A neighbor keeps trying to borrow a cup of sugar. An apprentice who doesn't want to learn her trade. A craftsmen or merchant who needs to hire more help.

If you keep NPC goals simple, your world will be grounded realistically and feel more believable to your players. Not all their goals need to be about avenging their father or finding a secret family heirloom.

With these easy goals set up, you'll be able to direct the conversation for a good role play encounter.

Now that you have a personality, or emotion word, a give or take action and a goal, you can use all three together to tell you what will motive the NPCs actions during your game. 

let your characters grow and evolve

Allow your characters to grow throughout the game itself.

Improvise, learn, and adapt your characters just like developing a player character. Find their voice during game play. Be patient with yourself and your characters, let them grow naturally over time. The best characteristics are revealed in game ove the course of many sessions.

 Don't forget to write down important things that NPCs say or want. This way your world and characters will be consistent from session to session.

Don't worry about making NPC stats unless you know specifically that they will be fighting the players. If the NPC never sees any combat, you won't need their stats. You can make up or fudge any of their rolls if you need to.

Playe the role of the character, don't be the Dungeon Master

The Angry GM says "Play the character instead of running the game."

While in role play conversation with players, don't try to narrate and manage the game, just act in character and react to what the players do and say. 

Don't think about what will happen next in the game until the conversation is over. Acting in character will put your focus solely on the role play, the convesation at hand, and your players will feel a deeper conection with that NPC.

You can even narrate with an NPCs voice.  How will the NPC will react to what the players are doing? Focus on your NPCs main goal and try to control the conversation in character. 

Practice reacting how that character would react to different things.

how helpful is your NPC?

When players want to make weird or uninformed choices,  you can use NPCs as the voice of reason instead of the DM talking. 

When giving out quests, use NPCs to give players hints about what monsters they might fight or warnings about what dnagers lie ahead. Hopefully, (for their sake) your players are smart enough to ask questions.

Set up characters that the players can go to for advice or help. A wizard who can identify items, a cleric who can heal, and almost evey group has criminal contacts that use can utilize.

Maybe there is a woodsman or ranger who can guide the players through the forest or a hireling who has experience fighting specific monsters.

The opposite is of course helpful too. Nobody will always want the same things that your players want. There will always be difficult NPCs who will be hard to work with or become an obstacel in the players way. Develop your enemies and villians this way to create great tension during a story. 

NPC voices and acccents

If you don't want to work with specific accents, you can also consider slightly changing your voice a little bit.

Make a NPC talk a lot faster than your normal voice, or slower. Talk with a deeper or higher voice.  These changes are simple and effective. Every time my voice gets lower, my players know that the bear is talking.

Consider differnent characters using filler words. Um... Er... Maybe... break up their sentances to create different speech patterns and recognizable inflections.

You can also use different vocabulary for different types of people. Perhaps your players encounter a well-educated higher class scholar or wizard. They would use fancier words and some magical technobabble. A bum on the street or a barbarian raised in the forest probably won't be using big words.

If you want to get better with accents, you'll have to practice talking a lot in that voice, outside of the game.

Quick checklist.

Create a personality traight or core emotion.

Are they a giver or a taker?

Does your NPC have a simple goal?

Is this NPC worth developing and growing as a character? How well do the players respond to this character?

How does your NPC reaact to players during converation?

Is the NPC working to help or hinder your players?

Thank You!

Here at we want to give our appreciation and support to gamers everywhere. Our mission is to inspire creativity and help everyone enjoy the best life possible.

If you are interested in learning all that you can about being a great Dungeon Master take a look at the DM's Aresenal.

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