Confidence Booster Series: Be Playful
“We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” ~George Bernard Shaw
This week’s focus is to make room for more play in our daily lives. Sadly it can be common to believe that spending the majority of our waking moments accomplishing purposeful and productive tasks warrants a badge of honour. Like the harder we work, the more worthy we are of praise and self-satisfaction. Very rarely do I come across people who ‘rave’ about what an awesome day they had swept up in an activity that had absolutely no purpose. It’s almost as though there is fear around allowing ourselves to admit that enjoying a little playful down time is sometimes what we crave most.
The best thing about play is that it doesn’t have to be structured or planned out, it can be spontaneous and doesn’t need to follow a set of rules. Allowing ourselves to surrender to playful pastimes tends to be the tricky part, as we are often conditioned to believe that our self-worth is connected to how busy and productive we are.
I have been guilty of feeling like I need to at least appear busy and productive even when I’m not. Instead of taking the well needed time to decompress, I will ‘busy’ myself in order to wear the badge that I’m good enough because I have completed ‘x number’ of tasks in a given day. I have to say that at the end of the day when I don’t take that time for myself, I lose my vibrancy and instead feel worn down and tired.
I believe that when we feel overwhelmed with endless to do’s, deadlines and responsibilities, it is a strong indicator that we need to offset the heavy part of life by doing activities that have no purpose other than they make us feel light and happy.
I was recently out for an evening run and passed by a man in his seventies with the hugest grin on his face. He was alone in his driveway flying his remote control aircraft. He wore the same beaming look that my four year old son would have if he was doing the same thing. This man was having the absolute time of his life immersed in a playful activity that clearly brought him joy. It reminded me how important it is to continue doing the things that brighten our spirits at every age and stage of life. I believe that taking part in activities for the sole purpose of fulfillment, really is the key to remaining vibrant and full of life.
A simple way I add more play to my day, is to get outside with my boys to jump on the trampoline. Children are wonderful instructors for reminding us what play and pure joy looks like. Their enthusiasm for all things involving play is contagious. It doesn’t ever take me long to follow their lead and lose myself in the natural fun of it all.
When I can lose track of all time and feel free to be authentically me, I am usually taking part in a playful activity. It could be time with my children, fun time spent out with my girlfriends, taking in the sights and sounds at a farmers market, or playing the music really loud and dancing around the house. These elements of play are some of the things that make me feel truly alive and if I were to cut them out of my life, I would very quickly feel lost and out of sorts.
This week say ‘Yes’ to injecting more playful activities into your day. Don’t worry about what others may think, and practice letting go of the incessant need to produce. Play time is yours by design. Look at it as an integral part of your health and overall well-being. On top of that, it’s an amazing way to boost your mood and confidence. Have a wonderful week.
Believe in Yourself – ❤ Emily
If you are interested in connecting to who you are on a deeper level, or if you would like to create a self-care and self-love practice — come on over and join our growing community within my E-Course, ‘Fall In Love With Your Life, One Week at a Time’. It is a chance to create your own life practice in a way that is meaningful to you.❤