SuperBetter is a free app designed to help build resilience. Jane McGonigal, who shared her story in a popular TED Talk, invented SuperBetter while she was going through a debilitating head injury. Backed by research, SuperBetter turns overcoming challenges into a game where users go on quests, fight bad guys, and activate power-ups. It basically translates the process of improving your outlook into a format many people already enjoy. A power-up is a small positive action that helps you feel better, a bad guy is anything that stands in the way of your goals, and a quest is small step you can take towards what you want. For this review, I chose eating healthier as my challenge, but there are many options, ranging from chronic pain to sleeping better.
SuperBetter makes the process of achieving your goals more pleasant. It’s easy to get started, and power-ups, bad guys, and quests are automatically added based on the challenge you set. The actions proposed are manageable, and you receive points after you complete each one. One of my power-ups was chugging a glass of water, which was so easy that I immediately got up and did it. It felt good to make progress right away and have it celebrated.
The app is also customizable and allows you to add your own power-ups, bad guys, and quests at any time according to your needs. It also tracks the points you earn in five key areas of strength: resilience, physical, mental, emotional, and social. This allows you to see your past achievements and compare your point totals to your best day, which helps you stay committed to your goals.
Some of the instructions were unclear, especially for quests. The text of my first quest didn’t clearly indicate that I had to finish that quest before I could add new ones, and it took me some time to figure this out. It would have been helpful to have more clarity in the instructions.
The best power-ups, bad guys, and quests were the ones that were specific. A few just provided a general recommendation that wasn’t helpful. For example, one of the recommendations was to eat only when you’re hungry and to stop eating when you’re full. I would have liked some specific tips for how to get better at doing that.
If you’re tired of not meeting your goals, SuperBetter could be just what you need to build the confidence and resilience to achieve them.Image: via SuperBetter