"WE ARE MOST HUMAN WHEN WE ARE AT PLAY"
Friedrich Schiller German Philosopher 1880's
It can truly be said that we are MADE for play.... humans are among the very few species of animals that PLAY AS ADULTS.
The evidence upholds Friedrich Schiller's hypothesis- we are most human when we play.... and REALLY...JUST BECAUSE WE PLAY
I work in the realm of joyful movement, so my clients lean on me to help create physical activity play with them, and give them the permission to play... why? Because today, EXERCISE can seem like a painful punishment- a penalty of sorts--you know the feeling? I had that cookie, I'll have to run another mile... or, exercise is something that is always on your to do list that never gets done.
Another perspective is that adults are always looking for the ANGLE- will this help me lose weight? fit in my jeans? get closer to that person? get a promotion?
Here's the truth: TRUE PLAY IS DONE SIMPLY FOR THE JOY OF THE ACTIVITY ITSELF. It's not a play date with ulterior motives..it IS the motive.
In their book called PLAY, Stuart Brown, MD and Christopher Vaughan explain the important of this unstructured, non goal oriented downtime.
They say "it energizes you and enlivens you. It eases your burdens. It renews your natural sense of optimism and opens you up to new possibilities" That can translate to stress relief, creative problem solving and even better relationships.
You may now be far removed from your exhilarating memories of "PLAY". Do you have fond memories of play?
Here are 4 ways to Get Play in Your Day- today:
1. Calendarize it
Sure, spontaneous is nice, but really??? Finding 5 minutes is hard for many folks- look for this time to unleash your inner child - put Play on your calendar.
2. Go back to kindergarten- hang with the kids or grands...
No kids? Me neither, but my nieces and nephews and neighborhood kids fill in- THEY ARE THE REAL EXPERTS in PLAY - go biking, play hide and seek, catch fireflies... if you aren't quite fit enough for some of that right now - make that plan to get fit. I can help.
3. Play in the margins
Be ready for play at all times. Keep those sneakers in the car and always pack your bathing suit, or Frisbee- you never know when your schedule will have an unanticipated break and you'll be ready to sneak some play in.
4. And finally.... Release your inner critic
How about scheduling a play date with your BFF to try something totally new...maybe a bit silly. Let your guard down and not care what anyone else thinks. Bet you have a friend, if you called them right now would be up for most anything!