The best and the brightest among us aren’t just born, they’re made. These innovators are forged by persistence and a willingness to explore new solutions to age old problems.

One way highly successful people, like this gamification software pioneer, have found to overcome personal and professional obstacles is through gamification.

What is gamification? It’s the art of applying gameplay elements to areas which wouldn’t generally utilize them, like work or fitness.

Feeling stagnant after a long 2022? Gamification is an easy (and fun) way to challenge the status quo and get you out of your rut. Studies have shown gamifying your life can increase both dopamine production and intrinsic motivation to help you achieve your goals sooner.

Here are four ways successful people use gamification in everyday life.

1. Create a ‘Kill List’

Everyone has a mental list of tasks that they positively loathe doing and will put off at any cost. Whether it’s making an overdue doctor’s appointment or taking out the laundry, these tasks take up real estate in our brains for far longer than the time it would take to just complete them.

Highly successful people don’t believe in the ‘too hard’ basket. Instead, they make a list of tasks to assassinate and call it their ‘kill list’. The name reframes these tasks as fun missions to complete instead of chores. The process will encourage your brain to associate these normally low-reward tasks with your favorite computer or console games.

2. Incorporate Mini Games

Highly successful people are always looking for ways to improve. Whether you’re looking to beat last month’s sales figures or reduce your waistline, incorporating mini games into your life can increase your motivation.

Anything can be a mini game, from washing dishes to getting to work on time. You just need to add gameplay elements, like targets and rewards. For example, to advance to the next ‘level’ at work, you might need to achieve $5, 000 in sales for the week or arrive early to work 3/5 days. Creating these targets will help you set S.M.A.R.T goals and encourage better time management.

To add extrinsic motivation, give yourself a prize for completing your mini games. Prizes could include a trip to a massage parlor, a weekend get-away or even just an extra coffee – whatever motivates you!

3. Use Checklists

Don’t have time to create mini games? No problem. Use a simple checklist at home or the office to schedule your most important tasks for the day. Ticking items off your list will create a similar dopamine release to achieving the game objectives discussed above. Set yourself rewards for meeting your targets, such as a coffee break, for every task achieved.

4. Try a Gamification App

Struggling to create a gamification system on your own? Check out one of the many free gamification apps on the market. Pick an app that allows you to share your achievements on social media. Science backs the idea that sharing your wins and competing with friends will increase the likelihood of reaching your goals.

One of the largest gamification apps, HabitRPG, lets you create an avatar to complete quests with. HabitRPG helps you identify areas of life you’d like to improve in and generates a corresponding list for you to complete. These tasks are split into Habits and a To Do List. As you tick off each task, you generate coins and gain experience which can be used to reward yourself (by watching TV, buying a treat, etc). You can also purchase pixel improvements to add to your avatar.

Studies show that new habits take around 66 days to form. HabitRPG is an effective support system for habit building as it lets you set recurring daily tasks and rewards you with experience whenever they are completed. Building your XP and gaining new skills in game provides you with tangible evidence of your progress toward your new habit.

Another example is Building Resilience: Super Better, an app that turns negative habits into ‘bad guys’ and weekly goals into ‘quests’ to make your self-improvement journey reminiscent of a roleplaying game.

Backed by highly successful individuals, like entrepreneurs and CEOs, gamification is the ultimate tool to overhaul your life. Start before 2023 with the tips above!