There’s a glut of self-improvement apps coming out for your smartphone lately. WeightWatchers, Strava, FitBit, the various one’s built into Android and iPhone’s operating systems, and plenty of other ones.
Most self-improvement apps focus on a specific purpose, whether that’s exercise, dieting, or quitting bad habits.
My self-improvement app of choice doesn’t have any specific focus. And if you haven’t already guessed from the title, the app is called Habitica.
Habitica lets you define your goals, what habits you want to develop, and which bad habits you want to lose. You can also define rewards for yourself (such as eating a piece of cake while on a diet). Let’s take a closer look.
This is the Tasks page. It lists all the different stuff you’ve set up for yourself to do. There are four different categories, Habits, Dailies, To-Dos, and Rewards.
Habits, Dailies, and To-Dos all have a lot of similarities. You set the name of the Task and its point value (Trivial, Easy, Medium, or Hard). If you do the Task, Habitica gives you gold which can be spent on Rewards.
Habits can be performed as many times per day as you’d like. Habits can also be negative, where you lose points in Habitica. This is for the bad habits that you want to quit.
Dailies have a recurring frequency. This can be every day as the name suggests, every Tuesday and Thursday, on a certain day of the month, or even yearly!
On a day when a Daily is set to be performed you must complete the Task or you lose points. Completing the Task gives you gold just as if it were a Habit.
To-Dos are longer term projects. You can set deadlines for them, but its not strictly necessary. I don’t use To-Dos that much.
Rewards are the final category. There are two types of Rewards in Habitica, in-game Rewards and out-of-game Rewards.
In-game Rewards are pieces of equipment that make your character (seen in the upper-left of the image) stronger and better looking. Better equipment means that you will gain more points from doing Tasks and lose fewer points when you miss a daily or do a bad habit.
Out-of-game Rewards are whatever you set them as.
I’m attempting to use Habitica to curb how much time I spend playing video games and watching YouTube, so those are the Rewards I’ve setup for myself.
Habitica has a few other reward systems. My favorite is the Pets.
It’s pretty much Pokemon style collecting of different little creatures. Every time you complete a Task there’s a chance that you will be given an Egg or a Hatching Potion.
Pets are collected by combining a Hatching Potion with an Egg to create the appropriate animal.
Pets can be upgraded by feeding them food to turn them into Mounts.
Habitica also has an active social community that tries to encourage people to stick with their mission to cultivate good habits and eliminate bad ones.
There are some additional rewards for engaging with this social community, but I haven’t taken advantage of it.
I have greatly enjoyed Habitica since I started using it about two years ago. Ironically, the RPG video game nature of it has helped me to stop playing games so much. I feel more motivated to be creative. I quit my habit of sitting on my feet. I am more responsible in completing the household chores I set for myself. It’s been an amazing positive force in my life.
Habitica’s greatest shortcoming is that it’s still an app that’s powered by your own self. Nothing is stopping you from lying and saying that you washed the dishes when they’re still stinking up your kitchen sink.
Habitica still requires discipline and self-honesty, but I don’t think there’s a self-improvement program out there that doesn’t require those two traits.
If you’re feeling like you want to change something in your life using a phone app, I would recommend trying out Habitica. The video game feel of it is a lot of fun and the app can be used for most any type of self-improvement project.
Try it out and let me know if you want some help from me in-game or out!