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12 Life Lessons I Learned Playing Portal

Updated on September 5, 2018
JJNW profile image

JJ has been writing helpful and fun articles online and in print for over 18 years. She enjoys sharing tips and ideas.


Using Portals to Get Though the Experiment of Life

Playing the game Portal can make an impact on your life.

My teenage son said I should play the PC game Portal. Awesome mom that I am, I agreed.

Portal is a logic game. So it seems. Personally, I think they start out that way to pull in unsuspecting suckers like me. I won't give anything away, as each person needs to face the lab at Aperture Science on his or her own, but know that Portal is, perhaps, more than might first meet the eye.

To say we have had a tough year would be an understatement. My son had me play this video game to teach me to realize my personal power, trust my own instincts, and persevere in spite of fear... Either that or he likes laughing when I go into a game rage.

Portal is an online game by Steam.

For a five-minute intro, see the video at the end of this page.

12 Life Lessons I Learned Playing Portal

1. Patience is a virtue.

Sometimes, when things look impossible, we need to sit back, have a cookie, and relax.

It is often in the moment of not thinking that the solution becomes apparent.

I have to admit to sheer panic in facing a few of the challenges in my trek through the Aperture Science labs. At first, I was sure something was hunting me down. Acting like a complete loony, I kept shooting and jumping through portals to escape some invisible enemy.

In life, it's easy to freak out. Calming oneself and taking time to have a cookie or a cup of tea can give us new perspective.

2. Patience can also be a curse.

On the other hand...

Sometimes when we fail to act, we miss the moment, we run out of time, or something is pulled out from beneath us. We need to be aware of what is happening around us and act accordingly.

I can't tell you how many times I had to start over a level because I stood there with my mouth hanging open as a turret homed in on me. Doy.

Portal 2 Sentry Turret LED Flashlight with Sound
Portal 2 Sentry Turret LED Flashlight with Sound

ACK!! Turrets! Why do I feel the need to step away from the light?


3. Keep going in spite of fear.

Feeling afraid?

We need to stop, turn, and look the enemy in the face. Running blindly out of fear can be disastrous. Knowing the facts helps us see the less-scary truth and possible solutions

4. Think outside, inside and inside-out of the box.

Playing Portal taught me to think beyond my normal ways of thinking. It's not enough to just think outside the box anymore. There are things to learn and to surprise us at any age.

5. Sometimes sacrifice is part of the game.

Learning to let go is important. When something we love is holding us back, it may be time to let go. It hurts, but it helps us move on.

6. No one has the right to control you.


No one.

Get away. Speak up. Whatever it takes.

7. Sometimes things are not what they seem.

We feel like we've looked everywhere for an answer.

I see that over there and that over there. I've already been there, done that. We may need to look at things in a completely different way from a completely different perspective.

8. There is ALWAYS a way out.

We will get out.

Sometimes life's challenges seem endless. We think there is no way out; no way forward. We may feel like we want to quit. Keep looking. There is always a way out.

9. Never give up.

Keep trying even when things look hopeless.

Run full throttle right through the finish line. Sometimes when you least expect it, a miracle happens and you do something you thought previously was impossible.

10. Winning in the the long run matters.

Life is tough. Everyone faces challenges along the way. In the end, those of us with love and honesty in our hearts will win. Celebrate small victories on your way to larger wins.

11. Sometimes the cake is a lie.

Facing the truth is hard. Is the cake a lie?


Ah, man. I wanted cake. I love cake.

I really, really deserve cake!

Okay. We just have to keep putting one foot in front of the other and go on, cake or no cake.

POLL Question for You

Is the cake a lie?

See results

12. Eat cake anyway.

Yeah. Go on. Make the cake yourself.

When someone steals the cake, lies about the cake, or smashes the cake...we need to get our own cake.

Ours will be better anyway.

What's Portal Like? A 5 minute intro.

Please leave a message. Then there will be cake (or not).

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    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Keep going in spite of fear.....there is always a way out.....we need to decide on a direction and move forward....keep walking. Thank you, just found your site. Thank you. So much needed for myself and kids now. Dark place for us. Just breathing at moment.

    • JJNW profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from USA

      @SimilarSam: Me too! I want there to be a Portal 3. I just beat Portal 2 - great fun (or slow torture?) - lol. Makes your brain kick into gear, for sure.

    • SimilarSam profile image


      6 years ago from Australia

      Wonderful idea for a lens. Portal is still one of the best games I've played.

    • JJNW profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from USA

      @ImmatureEntrepr: How kind! Thanks!

    • cynthiannleighton profile image


      6 years ago

      Interesting approach for a lens! Learned about Portal:-) for the first time. Life lessons too though...

    • ImmatureEntrepr profile image


      6 years ago

      What a neat idea for a lens! Squid Angel blessed. :)


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