Are you having fun? A little bit every day? It is easy to get caught up in all our responsibilities and neglect our need to play.
Fun came naturally when we were children, as did creativity, imagination, and exploration. These things are still important as adults. We don’t turn into one-dimensional beings as we get older, though that might often be our default. We are very attached to our work identity and so it is easy to give more time to work. As with anything, when we dedicate more time in one area, another area of our life has to give. If we have a tendency towards overworking, we don’t allow time for social gatherings, new experiences, fun events or outings, or exploring new places, things, ideas, and opportunities.
The crazy thing is that the more we allow ourselves to dedicate time to playing and exploring, the more productive and creative we are at work. If you resist taking time to have fun, remind yourself that it will actually benefit your work. It will also benefit your relationships and your mental and physical health.
I had a long day at work yesterday and my default is to keep working ( so counter-intuitive, right?). I am getting better at choosing to stop because I know after a certain point, I am no longer productive and am instead just approaching burnout. I’m not going to lie, sometimes allowing myself to have fun is challenging. (So silly!) I had bought tickets to go see an improv comedy show last night, which was the perfect antidote to overwork. Laughing really is some of the best medicine there is. I felt revived and it got my creative juices flowing. The trick is to actually schedule fun. Yes, we resist this because we think we shouldn’t have to schedule fun because then it’s not fun. The truth is that more often than not, if we don’t schedule fun, it doesn’t happen. (This has been my experience, anyway!)
Notice your default patterns. If your tendency is to keep working, look at your schedule for the week ahead and plan fun outings throughout the week. They don’t have to cost much. It can be as simple as going for a walk at lunch, or meeting a friend for coffee in the afternoon, or checking out a local theatre production or meetup group in the evening.
The important thing is to make it a priority. Devoting time to your mental and emotional health is critical for productivity at work, decreased levels of stress, positive relationships, and good physical health.
I encourage you to commit to doing something fun today. It is good for your heart, soul, mind, and body. See if you can make it as important as eating. It is just as important. Really.
Wishing you ridiculous amounts of laughter,
P.S. If you’re in a bit of a funk and aren’t sure how to shake it off, reply with what you’re struggling with and I’ll send you a mindset shift/reframe to help you release it and replace it with a powerful thought and inspired action. So much fun!