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Learn the theory
by playing with it.

Are you eager for a deeper understanding of Identity Development (Gear) Theory — and looking for an interactive way to study it? 

 

Grab a pencil, some sticky notes, and this game! 

PDF – Available for Free!  

Consider making a donation to Bright Insight. Thank you. 

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Identity Development Theory: The Game!™ 

Inspired by tabletop role-playing games, Identity Development Theory: The Game™ captures the dynamics of the Gear Theory into a fun, imaginative game of writing, reflection and character development. 

 

  • Play Time: 20-60 minutes 

  • Players: 1 or More

  • Reading & Writing

 

You’ll take the role of a fictional character and interpret a series of events — and how your character reacts to each one — to see how their identity develops. As you work through scenarios, your character may discover new information about their innate abilities, their past struggles, and, ultimately, their identity! 

 

Along the way, you’ll learn about how Gear Theory works, what makes each “gear” of identity, and what it’s like to work through the Awareness as Growth sequence.

Each Game Download Includes

The Identity Development Theory: The Game™ PDF packet includes

  • A detailed instruction sheet

  • A blank Character sheet

  • A blank Action sheet

  • A sheet of 6 prompt cards

  • Pre-filled sheets of popular characters, including Alice in Wonderland, Batman, Cinderella, Indiana Jones, Wonder Woman, and more

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How the Game Works

After you pick a character, playing is easy! 

  1. Get a prompt! 

  2. Write your episode! 

  3. Check for growth and update your character!

 

Play through more episodes until your character gets a fourth gear! 

When they do, congratulations! They’ve developed their identity, and you’ve “won.” You can keep playing to see how new awareness leads to a growing identity! 

 

Each download includes detailed instructions on how to play.

About Identity Development Theory: The Game!  

Developmental psychologists study how people change and grow across their lives. 

 

Tabletop role-playing games echo that same process with leveling up, backstories, experience points, etc. Every RPG character sheet holds what’s true about a character, and as game events unfold, their character grows in abilities, prowess, etc. 

 

What if an RPG’s mechanics used an actual psychological theory, one that’s been researched, validated, and successfully applied in multiple settings? 

 

That question sparked an idea for game designer and writer Youssef Sleiman. Psychological models such as Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and Erickson's Stages of Psychosocial Development grew to popular awareness through a dozen avenues, including usage in movies, TV shows, and workplace training. 

 

Instead of simply being shown the models, what might happen if people grew a more interactive understanding of the models by playing with them? Could playing games to learn about these models actually promote mental health? 

 

To find out, Youssef is embarking on a game-making endeavor to design games, role-playing or otherwise, that give people an accurate introduction to the models that therapists, clinicians, mental health practitioners, and psychologists use to promote well-being for their patients. 

 

He’s starting with the Identity Development (Gear) Theory, discovered by Patty Gently, Ph.D. MSMHC

 

Play the game to learn even more about the theory!

PDF – Available for Free!  

Consider making a donation to Bright Insight. Thank you. 

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Identity Odyssey_ Crafting Characters, Crafting Self Quote
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