To protect our long-term health and well-being, we need to be able to rest and recover after work. Studies suggests that playing digital games can be an effective way to rest and recover.
Playing digital games
People who play games after a stressful day at work should know that they are likely to be gaining a real benefit from the games. This is because digital games tend to be provide opportunities for mastering a new skill and are highly immersive, which helps to distract from thinking about work.
Our studies have shown that digital games promote post-work recovery more effectively than mindfulness apps. Participants who played a game on their phone after arriving home from work reported feeling more relaxed by the end of the week than those who were asked to use a mindfulness app. We encourage you to try playing video games to rest and recover after a long day at work.
If you are looking for a calming, relaxing experience – try life simulators like the Sims 4, Animal Crossing: New Horizons or Stardew Valley – these can help you feel more in control and provide a healthy dose of escapism.
If playing games is an activity you enjoy then schedule it into your calendar. We found that when game playing is scheduled, it is more effective at improving recovery.