You have big responsibilities. Perhaps you are raising children, managing a team, running your own business, paying bills, facing health challenges, taking care of a home or all of the above. Those responsibilities are part of life and they can get heavy. Overwhelming even.
There is a way to take the pressure off, even for few minutes and work towards a lighter look at things. Today’s mini mission to be more playful will help.
Mark and I do a lot of hiking and fun road trips and are becoming more and more playful. A break from responsibility and adulthood gives us perspective and makes us a better couple. Recently we went to our favorite stream in Little Cottonwood Canyon and had a picnic.
We talked about what it was like before we grew up. Before children, bills, worries and responsibility. Before cell phones, computers, email and text messages.
When we were kids we
- played outside until we heard our parents yell “dinner!”
- had marathon long games of monopoly
- played pinball
- passed notes to our friends. I sometimes dotted my i’s with flowers.
- said yes more often
- played army
- went roller skating
- built bike jumps
Things have changed since we were children. We know a little too much. We are a little too consumed with responsibility. We are grown ups.
Some things haven’t changed. Mostly, things just get better. At our favorite picnic spot, we had a contest. We chose a target on the other side of the stream and saw who could hit it with a rock first. It was silly and childish and made us laugh pretty hard.
Last weekend we drove up to the Bonneville Salt Flats to watch some of the world’s fastest cars and motorcycles. On the way we stopped to check out the salt. We were curious. We were playful. We were light. We were happy. This weekend, perhaps a picnic and movie night. Now that I’ve been to Bonneville Speed Week I want to watch The World’s Fastest Indian again.
We have an opportunity as responsible adults to be more playful. Being playful pulls us right into the present. You can’t worry about fixing your past when you are jumping rope. You can’t stress about the future while you are skipping rocks.
If you don’t think you have time to play, remember that playfulness …
- Fuels creativity
- Helps you sleep better
- Allows you to be planted firmly in the present
- Makes you laugh
- Softens your heart
Make the time.
Be more playful and not only break away from responsibility, but infuse some of your playfulness and lightness into each and everyday. Those things that become so heavy can feel lighter with a small shift in attitude. Shift from worry to gratitude. Think about your last playful moment or create one on the spot. Turn on your favorite dance music and get moving. Jump up and down, get crazy, play and be grateful for the opportunity.
Go on, be more playful.
What was your favorite way to play as a child?
For more experiments to simplify your life, read Mini-missions for Simplicity. It’s available on the Amazon Kindle store, but you don’t need a Kindle to read it. Kindle books can also be read using the Free Kindle Reader App for your Web Browser, PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, BlackBerry, or Android.