Coming off the heels of the pandemic, when connection and interpersonal relationships felt sparse and strained, the need for communication and to relate to one another is more important than ever.
Nina Westbrook knows that. The entrepreneur and founder of wellness brand Bene by Nina, licensed marriage and family therapist, mother of three children, and wife to NBA All-Star Russell Westbrook, aims to foster that kind of connectivity through her new card game, Do-Tell!
According to Westbrook, Do-Tell! is a fun, engaging way to spark meaningful conversation between friends and loved ones. The game is meant to bring people together and build a sense of community by allowing each player to address subjects they may typically be too afraid to discuss openly, including intimacy, intention, wellness, and self-awareness. It’s a game that encourages vulnerability and reveals commonalities across groups and individuals, reminding us all that we aren’t on this journey through life alone.
“The best way to get to know a person is through questions to forge deeper relationships. When you ask questions, that’s how you grow intimacy and connection. Playing the game will help us remain present in conversation with one another,” she tells ESSENCE.
With this game, Westbrook hopes to curate a safe space for others to be vulnerable and candid about their feelings, especially if they are struggling with their mental health. “I wanted to ensure that these questions challenged people to dig deep. I knew the questions had to be insightful. Every question was meant to serve some purpose,” she says.
Westbrook was inspired by the “Truth or Dare” games from her childhood, and while she never chose to do a “dare,” she decided to put her spin on the concept. “I thought I would include the ‘One Good Deed’ deck, which essentially serves as your ‘dare’ for passing on answering a question — a ‘truth.’ And in that ‘One Good Deed’ deck, there are little tasks that you have to complete. For example, it might say to register for CPR class or to call or text a friend or family member and tell them that you love them. Although simple in theory, sometimes we forget to do [these] things, and maybe don’t have as much time as we think, or we don’t make the time,” she says.
Westbrook also wanted the game to create necessary conversations intergenerationally, so older individuals can feel included and tap into their feelings.
“The ‘Keep It Cool’ deck is dedicated to my father’s generation. I’ve noticed that his generation sometimes may not be too in touch with their feelings. It was great to learn some things about him during the game that I hadn’t heard my entire life,” she shares.
She hopes the Do-Tell! card game can continue to help people open up in significant ways. “Playing this game could change the trajectory or their perspective on their mental health, and can help us move forward in life in a positive, healthy, meaningful way,” Westbrook says.
You can pre-order the “Do-Tell!” card game now, here.