The Single Most Important Lesson I've learned from playing D&D ...
This is a very challenging question to be honest. It is difficult to boil down the sum total of my D&D experience to a single lesson. I honestly thought about this for a little while and I think my last post really sums up what D&D is about for me and what I have learned from it and why I keep coming back.
D&D is about fun.
Yes that is an ultra simplistic breakdown of a role playing game. Ya ya ... games are supposed to be fun.
But that is a zen like mantra. When you play a bad game, sure the first time you play maybe it is sort of fun, maybe even the second, or the fifth time (I'm looking at you Monopoly). At some point though bad mechanics are going to shine through and your going to get bored. Stay with me here ... that never happened with D&D. I caught the bug at age 10 and even though I left D&D for years and years, I came back to it ...
When I did. What did I find?
D&D is one of the pivotal things in my life that taught me to just stop sometimes and have fun. Just do something purely for fun. Hell it doesn't have to be D&D it can be anything that provides you with pure unadulterated fun. Again this is not an earth shattering revelation I'm giving here, but be honest. As we age and acquire that mortgage, those car payments, that demanding boss/girlfriend/spouse/kids more and more of our time is claimed doing un-fun stuff. It is easy to sacrifice your own happiness, take some time and have some fun for yourself.
For me I learned that D&D, with a little effort (not too much) is a source of fun. That is why I keep coming back to it. It has provided me with more fun than any other game I've ever played. It isn't even close. D&D hands down has given me at this point, probably several thousand hours of fun. The fun to money ratio of D&D is amazing. The fun to time ratio isn't honestly that bad either (given that so much of the time you invest is actually fun). I could go on and on, rambling about this very simple concept that is so plain it doesn't really need to be said. But I have a penchant for stating the obvious!
I'll leave you now with amazing words of wisdom (appropriately unrelated) from one of the greatest thinkers of our age ... THE DUNGEON BASTARD! The lesson here is, again, have fun and don't take any of this too seriously.
D&D as an adult gave me a good reminder that fun is a necessary element of life! I really do believe that we all need fun in our lives. Don't forget to have fun, every single damn day if possible!