Feel like your life is one endless stream of “to do” tasks? All work, no play. You can go through your life seriously “serious” all the time. I have to admit I tend to run this way, full of purpose and intent, which can be very good. But there is also the need to let my playful side out to play as this is a needed balance for good self-care.And what a fun way to do self-care!
How to Let Your “Playful Side” Out More
- First up is what does it mean when we say your “playful side”? This may look different for different folks. But basically we are talking about doing something for fun or for the pure joy of it. It is something we enjoy. This can be an interaction or a specific activity. Playful Interactions might be: playful banter between a couple OR light-hearted non-hurtful teasing OR sharing a humorous incident with another OR laughing together, etc. Playful activities can encompass a wide range of things depending on your interests and play style. This could be taking a nature walk, riding bikes with your spouse or blowing bubbles with your child. It is whatever makes you feel alive and brings you joyful feelings.
- Assess how much playfulness is in your life. Just keep a mental note each day of if you feel a sense of playfulness or a sense of being light-hearted throughout the day. Do you regularly plan things that you or you and your family enjoy and find refreshing? Is the mood all serious? Where are you on the spectrum?
- Make a list of some fun things you or you and your family / partner want to do together. Put this in a spot where you can all see it as a visual reminder of what you think would be fun and as a way to encourage you to put these things into your life.
- Create a space / time for more playfulness. Some folks need to pencil this in their calendars. Others can be more spontaneous with it. Of course a mix of this is ideal. Planned times help to make sure these playful times occur. And the spontaneous playfulness is “icing on the cake” and feels especially good.
- Consider the benefits of play if you feel you really don’t have time for it. When we take time for play, we take time to renew ourselves – giving our self the gift of self-care. It is a wonderful stress reducer. When we have no “down time” we cannot do the best job we can with our job as a parent or as a spouse or as a professional. In this case “down time” is time off the clock where we are enjoying our selves and not being pressured “to do” in our fast past world we live in. Good self-care, which play is a part of means better health, better relationships and a better happier you! As a Registered Play Therapist I also know the tremendous healing power of play. So do add these joyful experiences to the top of your list!
Professional Disclosure: This blog is offered as educational information and is not offered as professional therapeutic services. This is not intended to serve as treatment. For professional help contact your local mental health professional. Strom Individual and Family Therapy is not liable for any action or non action you take in regard to this article.