When was the last time you put emphasis on “play-time”? From age 18 on or maybe a little sooner our ‘play-time’ really goes out the window because now we’re adults in a sense and we’re required to do adult things because that’s just how things are, right? I don’t know the last time I played but I think I would like to start. The way I define ‘play-time’, is just being able to enjoy a moment without judgement to really be your true self. It can be filled with play dates (brunch with adult beverages, happy hour, staycations, checking-in with friends/family, etc), being okay with just being alone and enjoying that moment with you and also creating an imaginary space for yourself to be creative, be at peace, etc.. It could just be writing or partaking in a favorite hobby, but I think it would be a great addition to overall mental wellness. Think about when you were young, what care did you have but deciding what outfit to put on your doll, what truck to carry around, which non-matching outfit you would put together and what imaginary friend you would pick to sit at the tea-table? Play time could be very beneficial in getting you into a space that you are comfortable with you. I think it can help with a few things like:
Relaxation: What more can you ask for but being at peace in a moment that you create for yourself? Setting up a space full of things that can help bring on that relaxation or can be used to extend this time for a much-needed moment to be fully balanced through mind, body and soul. As a child, nothing could get in my way if I wanted something that I thought would make me happy so I think that should apply to our relaxation. Relax with candles, a bath, talking to you plants, petting any animals, reading a book with a nice glass (bottle) of rosé, etc. This time should be used wisely, thinking about how it feels to be in this moment, savoring this moment and accepting how great you feel.
Bringing on your fun side: You get to be creative again, it may take some getting used to, if its been a while but you get to think about things outside the box. You can find yourself again, figure out what you do like to do for fun and you may have to just use what you have and create a fun space for yourself that you will enjoy. A simple paper and crayons could keep me busy when I was younger so it’s about bringing out that creative fun side because we know it’s there. You can create this space for yourself in any situation regardless of the limited resources you might have.
Getting you out of your head: You can’t do two things at once in this moment. We are trying to create this fun-filled space for you where you focus on your well-being, so in doing this, its about allowing yourself to be in the moment. It allows for you to focus on fun and more fun and that’s what it should be about. No need to try and think about a meeting coming up, or an email that has to be sent, you’re trying to be in this moment of enjoying yourself, no grown-up vibes allowed. Doing things like this can really carry over to other aspects of your life, where you learn to stay in the moment, focus on that conversation that is being direct your way, instead of thinking of how this person didn’t speak to you earlier.
Prioritizing your time: When you start to realize how much fun you’ve been missing out on, you may start to incorporate it into your daily schedule. When you really start to make those “play moments” a force to be reckoned with, you make sure you create that time for yourself more often. It’s about understanding the importance of your happiness and being able to fill moments with little or big doses of ‘play time” behavior.
I owe all of this getting into my creative, playful side to a book that I started and need to finish, called the Own Your Glow, a way to really get in touch with you and find your inner glow.