Jan B. sent me a great newsletter with a lot of links and great quotes, all about play. Here's one particularly thought provoking quote:
“What do most Nobel Laureates, innovative entrepreneurs, artists and performers, well-adjusted children, happy couples and families, and the most successfully adapted mammals have in common? They play enthusiastically throughout their lives. — What common denominator is shared by mass murderers, abused children, burnt-out employees, depressed mothers, caged animals, and chronically worried students? Play is rarely or never a part of their lives.”
— Stuart Brown, Institute of Play
Actually the website is about the importance of play and creativity in the workplace. So I followed these interesting links and ended up with the ten top reasons why it's good for employers to encourage employees to play. Coincidentally, I had been reading a bit on the use of massage in the workplace to promote relaxation, creativity, and productivity. Suddenly a big moment of enlightenment occurred as these two ideas swirled together in my mind. If these things are good for employees and the productivity of a company, they must be good for us in our lives all the time.
So here are my ten reasons to play and relax, not for our employers but for us:
1. Play is the path to fun. Fun leads to creativity and inner satisfaction. We are free to be creative if we are feeling playful and happy.
2. Play has all kinds of intrinsic rewards and helps us feel good by releasing positive brain chemicals.
3. The quality of our lives suffer if we don't take the time to play and relax. But we have become so "busy" it's hard to imagine creating time to play and relax. When was the last time you took time for yourself?
4. Most traditional cultures have time set aside for rest, making it sacred and an absolute necessity. Perhaps there is some wisdom to be found in traditional cultures.
5. We need time to do nothing, let problems incubate and allow for creativity to flow.
6. When we are at play, we can experience that spacious feeling of unlimited possibilities.
7. Play and relaxation allow us to be happy in our lives. If we are happy in our lives we are more resilient.
8. Playful activities generate joy and replenish our inner wellsprings. We are able to create and problem-solve effortlessly.
9. Play frees us from worry and stress, making life easier to cope with.
10. Play keeps our passions alive. We thrive in fun, relaxing, and creative environments because our passion is animated. What can we do to add a little fun, relaxation, and creativity in our environment?
I love coincidences, they make me feel quite playful, so on the same day that Jan sent me on this relaxation and play journey, Adela sent me this link, http://uncontrol.com/ where I totally got into flow mode, lost track of time, and solved about 10 problems I had been working on!!!
Thank you Adela and Jan! Now I'm off to check Stuart Brown's Institute of Play.