Good Games Connect Families
|February 21, 2012||Posted by Game Gal under Family Games|
Instead of the title of this blog article, perhaps what I really mean is “games connect good families.” Families that play games together seem, in general, to be healthier, happier and more stable than families who wouldn’t think of playing a game together. I am not a therapist, scientist or social researcher but I know so many families play games together and they all seem to be, well…well-adjusted. Games won’t keep a family from being dysfunctional if there are forces that make them so but laughing together and using our brains to play have such profound benefits.
Working toward a common goal is a hoot and essentially that’s the premise behind playing a game together whether it’s a quick game of Checkers or an intense game of Bridge. The players must know the rules and achieve a victory, whether individually or in a team, under certain conditions.
When you play a game with someone, you learn so much more about them. When I play with someone, I learn how he reacts when he is repeatedly beaten by me. (Just kidding. No I’m not.) Playing games together helps you learn how others pay attention, approach a challenge, take advantage of strategies allowed, solve problems, respond to setbacks, celebrate a victory that’s theirs or not. I really like discovering the kind of humor they have.
Family Game Nights seem to be more and more popular, perhaps in part due to Hasbro’s promotions. There are entire cottage industries that revolve around families playing games together. When the economy is stressed, families pull out the old Clue and Game of Life board games. When times are prosperous for families, they pull out the new Clue and Game of Life board games. In addition to board games, families are cranking up the XBox, PlayStations or Wii games and huddling around iPads to have some fun as a team. Games seem to float along with families regardless of economic conditions. Playing games may be right up there with only a few other family behaviors that seem to cheerfully ride the tide of fluctuations in the economy. Picnics, spiritual activities, cooking, reading and playing games are all tried and true things to do to keep family members connected to each other.
There’s a strong case to be made that good games are a premier way of connecting people. Good games are effective ways to approach team building when you want to bond people to each other. In my family, games and dinnertime conversations were two activities that brought us together and gave us opportunities to learn about ourselves and each other. Of course, I’ll never forgive my mogul brother for building all those hotels on Broadway and Park Place every time we played Monopoly!