Saturday, February 27, 2010

10 Lessons I Learned from FarmVille


FarmVille is a Facebook game which allows members of the popular social network to plant, grow and harvest fruits and vegetables as well as raise animals on one’s virtual farm.

I only started playing FarmVille five days ago and, as of this writing, I am now at level 14 with 45,431 coins and 4248 XP. You can say that I am a dedicated farmer. Most of the animals and trees I own are gifts from fellow farmers. The more I play FarmVille the more I enjoy the real-time flash game. One time I had to reschedule my dinner to harvest my crops on time.


Here are ten lessons I learned while tending my virtual farm.

1. Growth takes time, effort, and lots of patience. You cannot hurry the crops. Or make your cows produce milk in seconds. Growth is neither sudden nor easy. It is a process which requires that one step be completed successfully before proceeding to the next.

2. There are always elements that will try to stifle your growth. In FarmVille you have to deal with leaves, weeds, and crows. I real life you have to deal with difficult situations and people who discourage you and try to pull you down.

3. But don’t worry about leaves, weed, and crows – your neighbors will always come to your aid. Look around, you are never alone. Believe in the goodness of others.

4. Helping others clean up leaves, scare off crows, or kill weeds not only give you extra coins and XP but also make you a better neighbor. Whenever I receive messages like this – “Hiya, Fr.! Just look at these leaves! Would you help me rake them up?” I always click “yes”. My main motive is not to gain more coins and XP but to return the favor to people who have also helped me keep my own farm clean and healthy.

5. The more gifts you give, the more gifts you receive.
This is true in FarmVille. This is also true in real life. It was Orison Swett Marden who said “We must give more in order to get more. It is the generous giving of ourselves that produces the generous harvest.”

6. If you don’t harvest on time, your plants will wither. Just as in FarmVille, to succeed in real life you have to do the right thing at the right time.

7. You can share your triumphs with others. In Farmville you can share your rewards in the form of bonuses. I know of some people who regularly check their Facebook feeds to see if any of their friends have recently won any ribbons. For there they will find the option to earn a bonus from them. The better the ribbon the more coins you will get.

8. You need to work hard to get what you want and need. Aside from plowing, planting and harvesting and dealing with leaves, weeds and crows, you also have to budget your time and coins. You also need to buy the right seeds, trees and animals for optimum profit. Believe me, it can be complicated. If you want to succeed in FarmVille you have to work hard. If you want to succeed in life you have to work harder. As David Bly puts it – “Striving for success without hard work is like trying to harvest where you haven’t planted.”

9. You do not become a Good Samaritan through a single act of kindness. You need to help other farmers hundreds of times before earning your Good Samaritan ribbon. In the same way, you do not become a good person just by doing one single act of goodness. You need to be a good person, a “good samaritan” repeatedly and consistently.

10. After a harvest there must plowing and sowing again. Such is life. The end of something is the beginning of another one. And I hope that as you complete one step in your life may you begin the next one as a person who has matured and learned his lessons. Always do your best. What you plant now, you will harvest later.