June 3, 2009

Cheap Psychotherapy for You and “O.C. Legs” – I think the girl I met at the gas pump yesterday had a lot of spunk. She was wearing high heels and a short skirt. And the license plate on her flashy car read “OC Legs.”

Maybe she was a district attorney or a brain surgeon but her public message seemed to reflect how she most clearly defined herself.

I smiled and commented on her license plates. She told me that sometimes they embarrass her.

Suppose, in the wonderful category of “you don’t have to be sick to get better,” “Legs” decided on a mission to redefine herself. Suppose she went for therapy.

In therapy, she’d explore questions such as:
1. What kind of person am I really?
2. What kind of person would I like to become?
3. Should I tend to my own “lawn” or step onto the “grass” on the other side of the fence?
4. Will the grass be greener over there?
5. How do I treat the people I love?
6. How do I treat strangers?
7. What are my core values?
8. What will my new license plate be?

The New York Times published a review this week of a video game called The Sims 3. Apparently the Sims series games (which I have never played) give people an opportunity to try out a different identity without having to imagine themselves in some strange and/or outrageous galaxy.

Young teens eat up this stuff, but it may have applications for adults as well. Because it’s grounded in our real world, this game may be a cheap way to explore anyone’s secret desires and fears.

With the Sims games, you get to start by making a “Sims person.” Your person could be any age. Perhaps yours. You get to choose her appearance, maybe even the length of her legs. You get to define her personality, fears, desires and mental health.

You choose whether or not your “Sims person” lives alone or within a family. You determine how your character falls in love and advances in her career. (Men can do this too.)

You make decisions which determine the direction your character will take.

You get to create a new you.

Wow! Adults who confront themselves like this in real life and explore life-changing options, usually do so only in the face of some big crisis. Only then, do they seek expensive psychotherapy.

Could a video game put me out of business?

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