It's Monday! And you know what that means.....
Well it means we all probably have a bit of "the Mondays" right now. It's hard coming off of a weekend and getting back into the responsibilities of work-life. Mondays are the day for picking up our responsibilities and responsibly working our way towards holding them all - for our families, our workspaces, our houses, our careers, our friends, and our goals. We hold all of these things for ourselves, but often forget that taking care of our self first is what builds the strength to carry those loads. Which is why for Day 5 I am encouraging you to intervene your Monday with 5-10 minutes of play for the sake of FUN and discovering where fun resides, for you.
"Fun is why we Play. Play is what we do to have fun. Games are what we do to share and enlarge our understanding and mastery of Play. And a playful path is what we travel when we bring our Playfulness into the world." Bernard DeKoven, The Playful Path
Embrace the idea of Having Fun
If you're anything like me, you might be feeling a little dismissive of this idea. I have to admit that although I have always been very carefree, I come from a background of hard work and ambition being the cornerstones of living. There is so much to do and be doing that "having fun" can feel unnecessary, distracting, or just not serious enough to fit in with other goals you are working towards. Not that you don't have it - you just don't seek it out. Fun finds you, rather than the other way around.
It wasn't until I found myself a few years out of college and deeply struggling with anxiety, depression, and PTSD that I rediscovered my own relationship with Play and having fun. After deciding to pivot away from the film and tv industry that I had been purusing out of college, I got a part-time job as an after school arts teacher working with K-5th grade students. My job every day became the creation of arts-based activities for groups of children, or other ways of structured playing - that also facilitated early childhood learning needs. It was immersed in this work environment that I began to question what Play was- like truly WHAT IS IT? I noticed that after days of running around the field with my students for an outdoor break, I felt energized. I found myself more and more easily slipping in to role-playing imagination games with them, creating silly art prompts, and making short comedy films with them. What I realized is that somewhere along the way, I had lost touch with what it meant to be truly and authentically playing. My adult brain would give me fun experiences, but rarely would I stop to play. And there was some gold here because in sync with this discovering, I was seeing my mental/emotional struggles decrease.
"We have been taught to distrust Play. Worse, we have been taught that we are not and should not be playful. We have been taught that Play is childish, immature, destructive. Taught by people who have themselves lost the path, who were themselves taught by people who believed that fun was, can you believe this: sinful. Taught by people who have inhereted a broken culture where common sense has been replaced by common senselessness. Taught that if we work hard enough, and long enough and live a life that is dull enough, we will be rewarded- when fun is the reward." (Dekoven, 2014. p. 17)
Fun: It's Fundamental
This is really all to be saying -- don't be hard on yourself if "having fun" feels a bit more like a chore currently than it does natural. That's why we're here! To peel back the layers of adulthood learning that we shouldn't be playing - that if something doesn't teach us a new skill, make us money, advance our career, or produce something tangible or productive then we should not be doing it. Fun is truly fundamental to how we take care of ourselves, in order to wether the world and all of the important work we have to do in it. FUN is rebellion - it is a way of resting, and recovering, so as to continue on the good fight.
Check out panels below for jumping off points for each personality today! Be sure to take an internal inventory of how you feel before playing, and after - so that you can start to pinpoint easy access points for having fun.
PLAY does not have to cost you anything
allow for the unexpected to FLOW
See you tomorrow for Day 6!