How easily do you claim time to play? Do you incorporate play into your weekly schedule? Are you working for the weekend? Is an upcoming vacation the only thing allowing you to stay sane? When playtime does roll around are you able to let go or does the monkey mind keep you caged in? I’m happy to report that my chaotic life circumstances have settled, I have shifted my shit, and I am feeling a sense of balance in my life.
Here is the funny thing, on my day off, I had a very hard time giving myself permission to play. A gorgeous afternoon, my pool was sparkling, and yet my monkey mind kept me busy with tasks inside the house. I was stuck in my old pattern of ‘getting my chores done before I could allow myself to play.” I know the value of balancing play with work. I gave myself permission to play for 90 minutes, and told myself I could tackle tasks afterward if needed. I set a timer and went outside. I checked the timer after 20 minutes, laughed at myself and went back outside. When I heard the timer beep I was happily splashing in my pool. I turned the timer off and played the rest of the day.
I saw and felt the benefits in just being vs. doing. I let my monkey out of the cage and my spirit was filled up with fun, joy and sun. The act of setting the timer, temporarily soothed my mind that believed that the tasks were the priority. The first 20 minutes I battled with myself: “Is it okay to play?” When the 90 minutes was up I had shifted from the ‘doer’ and gave myself permission to ‘simply be.’
Benefits of play: Play can add joy to life, relieve stress, supercharge learning, and connect you to others and the world around you. Play can energize you and will increase your capacity to navigate life’s muck. Play can also make work more productive and pleasurable.
Fostering an attitude of play, daily, takes practice just like exercise. Remember ‘play is an attitude’ more than an event or location. It is the practice of allowing ‘you’ to be present in the moment and simply being vs. doing. In the words of George Bernard Shaw, “We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” Playing can boost your energy and vitality and even improve your resistance to disease, helping you feel your best. Now, turn off your screen and go play, I’ll be waiting for you…
Susie Raymond, Catalyst Life Coach, Reiki Master/Teacher, Esthetician, Breathwork guide