The Importance of Play

So much of our health takes into account what we eat, how we rest, how we think and how to modi­fy it. It’s all very ser­i­ous busi­ness, the busi­ness of liv­ing. However, we as adults like to turn it into some­thing very ser­i­ous. We apply so much mean­ing to life, “good” and “bad” liv­ing, that we for­get to take advant­age of the moment, and to be silly and to play.

Some of you, of course, have com­pletely turned off already, think­ing;

What the hell is she talk­ing about?! I’d love to ‘play’ if I had a minute to myself to do some­thing for myself, without thou­sands of things on my plate!”

I hear you. I myself have a busy sched­ule, but this isn’t a com­pet­i­tion. It’s about all of us remem­ber­ing that we get really tired as adults of the “roles” and “iden­tit­ies” we have cre­ated for ourselves. What about actu­ally explor­ing what brings us hap­pi­ness and joy?

Many people dis­like their jobs, as an example. They are not sure exactly though what their pas­sions or interests really are, because they spend a lot of time being respons­ible and just doing the job they have. Which is com­pletely fine, but then we lose sight of who we are if we’re not hon­our­ing what we actu­ally need, even if not just a little.

How we can find that of course, is by explor­ing. Playing a silly video game on your phone. Going to that free sem­in­ar on drum­ming and rhythm. Trying a new food. Going to karaōke and singing a song that you don’t know the words. Just play­ing and switch­ing it up.

If you give your­self a few minutes each day to have the space to try some­thing new, or read some­thing dif­fer­ent, your nat­ur­al curi­os­ity will keep grow­ing. Trying some­thing new can allow you to find what you actu­ally like doing, or just to remind you that you’re not an “adult” but just a human explor­ing this world.

For those of you that are goal-ori­ented, find­ing play again helps to reduce your stress (both men­tally, emo­tion­ally, and phys­ic­ally), it con­nects you to the play­ful nature of oth­ers around you, it helps you to make new friends, or get to know the friends and fam­ily you have in a more under­stand­ing way, it pro­motes growth…so not just for child­hood, but our whole lives through!

So much of adult­hood is about accept­ing things for what they are and learn­ing to deal with that. Wouldn’t it be easi­er to deal if we also allowed ourselves to be ourselves, whomever that is? That also includes play­ing.

We don’t stop play­ing because we’re old; we grow old because we stop play­ing”

-George Bernard Shaw

Food for thought.

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