Gaming: How video games help me cope with student life

22 Jan 2019
By Pauline M., Student at King's College London

Think video games are just for fun? Think again. I can tell you from personal experience that playing games can serve a plethora of other purposes and help you settle into university life.

Here’s how video games have helped me deal with uni.

You can unwind in no time

Video games can certainly become frustrating if things don’t go to plan, but they are still one of the best ways to unwind after a long day of study. You could use all of that pent up stress and anger as an excuse to embark on a killing spree and fight your way to the top of a leaderboard.

It’s a win-win situation – you not only get to release all of your negative energy but also have a good time (provided that you win, of course). And the taste of success can never be too sweet, am I right?

You get a sense of escape and achievement

Being able to escape into an alternate reality, where you’re safe from deadlines and looming projects, is a priceless feeling that every overwhelmed student would be glad to experience.

I find story-driven games perfect for immersing myself in another world and taking my mind off my responsibilities. It can also feel rather empowering, mastering tricky situations and saving lives, even if only in a video game scenario.

Check out: One moment at a time: How I deal with anxiety at university

You can use your hobby to make friends

Settling into uni life and finding new friends becomes much easier if you draw on your gaming experience. How, you may ask. Well, why not begin by looking through your university’s list of societies and clubs to see if there are any video game ones?

Whether you’re a casual gamer or really into esports, I guarantee you’ll be able to find at least one society dedicated to video games. From then on, everything is simple – you’ll meet like-minded people who share your love for virtual realities and you’ll be able to enjoy your hobbies together.

Fun fact: that’s exactly how I met my best friends at uni.

See also: How do we tackle loneliness? We do it together

Endless opportunities just waiting to be explored

Online or off, it matters not - delve into the world of gaming once and you won’t regret it. It’s just another pastime, such as reading or binge watching your favourite show, except it’s infinitely more gripping.

Don’t listen to those who say it’s a ‘waste of time’ either – there are plenty of ways that your interest in video games can be useful. For instance, it could be your motivation and reward for a morning of focused study or a way to reconnect with old friends and battle homesickness.

So why not give them a try?

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Pauline is an English Language and Literature graduate and Masters student studying in London.