Skip to content

Life Is Like A ...

Life is like a box of chocolates video game!

You didn’t really think I was going to write a blog inspired by that Forest Gump line, did you?  I like chocolate, but for this blog the analogy doesn’t work.  Yes, it’s true, you never know what you’re going to get.  But, for this blog, life is like a video game.  Let me explain:

Video Game

Still to this day, I enjoy a video game whereby I control a character or a group of characters on a mission through a fictitious world.  Slaying dragons, solving riddles, and leveling up at every opportunity.  In fact, ask any “gamer” what their favourite part of these “role playing games” is, and I’ll bet they say it’s the moment a character earns enough experience to “level up”.  You see, throughout the game, a character needs to increase their strength, spell power ability, endurance, thievery ability, swordsmanship, etc.  As the character gains experience throughout the game, they apply these increases in ability to their various skills and attributes.  The moment you get to increase your strength, for example, is not just exciting for the “gamer”, but critical for the character’s ability to forge on through the dangerous, fictitious world.  Most games present the character’s attributes/stats somewhere on the video game screen so you can see your strength levels dwindling, injuries mounting, and ultimately provides a countdown clock for the character for when they must seek out medical care, hydration, nutrition, and/or rest.

Real Life

Our real life does not have these characteristics and attribute levels in the corner of our eye as we navigate our life.  But, they do exist.  (Perhaps one day our iPhone, Fit Bit, and google glass will solve this problem)  Each one of us has a certain level of strength, endurance, irritability tolerance, threshold for pain, injury, sickness, and magical abilities (maybe?).  We just don’t see it dwindling down or “leveling up” in real time.  We actually require real life moments, visits to the doctor, dentist, chiropractor, psychologist, etc. to acquire such information.  When your medical doctor tells you your blood pressure is too high, you do everything in your power to solve this problem.  Same goes for cavities, back pain, and diabetes, to name just a few.

Leveling Up

Some of us navigate our entire lives without addressing the dwindling statistics.  We hope that we live a long, healthy, successful life without having to “level up” in any of our characteristics, skills, and attributes.  And, we hear many stories of individuals who have been successful playing the game in this manner.  Whether that individual was blessed with high enough levels to begin with, or perhaps they passively acquired the levels necessary to make it through life relatively unscathed.  These are the lucky ones.  For the rest of us, we need to routinely be assessing our data and leveling up at every opportunity.  And, interestingly, much like in the video game, it’s very exciting and critical to our lives when we level up.  When a heart diseased individual alters their diet and adds exercise to their routine and produces an improved blood pressure and resting heart rate, that individual has significantly “leveled up” their character.  When my patients with back pain learn how to move their hips and spine and control those movements with strength, they have significantly “leveled up”.

Academically Leveling Up

In the academic world, we’re used to the idea of working hard to “level up”:  We go to University, take classes, get a job, then take continuing education classes, and on and on.  In the skills realm, we typically spend our childhood learning as many skills as we can – sports, musical instruments, and even magic!

Healthy Life Leveling Up

In the health department of life, there are certain “critical to life” statistics: Blood pressure, blood sugar levels, heart rate, etc.  In a video game, these too would be critical attributes to keep an eye on to make sure your character doesn’t die before you “win the game”.  But, much like the video game, life requires many more attributes to be honed and “leveled up” in order to navigate this world.  We don’t really need swordsmanship anymore, and I hope you’re not using all your experience points to improve your ability to steal.  But, I do hope you’re learning how to move more, move better, be stronger.

Leveling Up with Dr. Michael Berenstein

Ultimately, my concern for my patients (and myself) is to constantly be “leveling up” our tissue capacity; our joints should move and move well; our muscles need to be strong.  The need / demand to move well and often is forever.  You can never move enough during part of your life to allow yourself to not move at a different stage of life.  Strength, too, needs to constantly be improved.  We are never staying still in life.  Time is always moving forward, and our skills and attributes are either being honed or are diminishing (the stats in the corner of the screen are going down).  We’ve come to believe that all “old people” will be stiff, weak, and unbalanced.  When we see an older person who breaks that mold, we are amazed.  If we hone our movement, our strength, and continue to pursue “leveling up” our physical health, we can becomes the “old person” who is strong and mobile.  Our stats will look impressive.  And, physically, we will have won the game.

If my office is a stop on your character’s journey through life, my mission for your character is to acquire joint range of motion, tissue strength, balance, and ultimately for your character to “level up” in the domain of physical health.

I help my patients achieve this level by using chiropractic, lasers, manual therapy, functional range conditioning, and health wisdom.  If you have not been in to see me in some time (perhaps because you’ve been feeling well, or perhaps your character has run out of time), please stop in to learn the ‘what’ and ‘how” to leveling up your physical health.

2 Join the Conversation

  1. Bella allen says
    Feb 09, 2016 at 5:52 PM

    Hi michael Just a quick note to tell you how much i enjoy your newsletter. Your observations are so pertinent and your personal stories so entertaining. I really feel like there is a genuine, caring person behind the advice you give. Thanks for your honesty. Bella

    • says
      Feb 15, 2016 at 11:05 AM

      Thank you so much for the kind words ... made my day. I'm glad you find some value (or entertainment) in my stories. "Life is like a video game" was a fun one for me to write. It's a perspective on life.

Add Your Comment (Get a Gravatar)

Your Name


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *.