Eat. Play. Love.
A Christmas time mantra.
When life swaps its colour for a bland tone of grey,
Your focus needs changing from work to more play.
Being childlike with the art of your choice,
Whether crafts, games or music all inspire through their voice.
*As your imagination becomes open your spirit is set free,
Surrendering a need for control, exchanging DO for more BE.
It is 4.30am – the first day after a return flight from Australia – and my warped body clock is saying its ready to wake up, so it feels like a prime time to pen my thoughts of the moment.
As some of you know, I am pretty prone to playfulness – school teachers may have said a little too much at times. However, the topic of play and its relationship with our health has become a growing professional, as well as personal, interest to me and the wellbeing (even business) industry as whole recently.
Apart from a tasty meal with friends or a big hug I don’t know anything more effective to shift our moods and re-balance our lives.
As my playful poem suggests, there are many different ways to experience a sense of play at any stage of life. But thanks to Stuart Brown MD, author of PLAY, we can see that there are some common properties amongst them all:
· Apparent purposeless: No survival value – just enjoyed for it’s own sake
· Voluntary: No sense of duty or obligation involved
· Fun: Makes you feel good + a useful cure for boredom
· Lose track of self & time: Being fully in the moment – known as ‘flow’
· Opens you up: To chance, insights and new possibilities in your thinking
For me personally ‘Play’ most of all offers a framework for us to relish a sense of freedom.
But how does this benefit our health? Well, when we feel off key in any area of our lives, we’re likely to experience physical tension, mental fogginess, a lack of energy or a change in temperament. And with this awareness of this comes the opportunity to change our focus and retune our vibration, both of which play does brilliantly.
Of course exercise, relaxation, socialising and being in nature all work wonders when we need to reboot. However, there is something about the abandonment of self and relinquishing of any outcome as well as the pure fun factor that allows unadulterated play to shift where the others may just tweak!
With the festive season coming upon us, we have the perfect opportunity to remind ourselves and others of the power of play.
Here are a few tried and tested ideas…
· Board & Card games
Note to self: Outcome isn’t important, watch out for the over competitive voice inside
Note to self: give yourself permission to be silly
· Sing & Dance
Note to self: choose music that makes you smile and go for it
If you are struggling to find your playful side, remind yourself of what you enjoyed doing as a child. It is a great place to start.
Wishing you all a wonderfully fun and frivolous Christmas!