DO YOU REALLY HAVE TOO MUCH STRESS, OR JUST NOT ENOUGH Play and Pleasure In Your Life?
Did you know play is actually a great way to relieve stress and get to know yourself and someone else?
Plato said “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.”
What is the definition of play?
Play is all about Being in the moment. Play is healing, sensual & brings us so much pleasure, excitement and creativity! We are truly “in the zone” when we are playing.
HOW CAN I PLAY? The following are three elements that must be present for play to be present. Sometimes we think we are playing when in reality we are not. For example a father might take his son to play basketball for quality time and stress out his son by demanding that his son shoot hoops “perfectly” or in a certain way that is what dad wants. The child may feel pressured to have to “to it right” instead of him just simply playing with dad for the sheer joy of having fun with dad.
1. Suspension of reality. Let go of all your roles. Everyone is equal, there is no ranking.
Be true and authentic YoU! Give yourself the permission to truly honor what you feel and express that in an honest and loving way. We live in ease, we feel most at peace when we live with from our truth.
When you play, try not to take on any of your traditional roles such as mother, father, daughter, son, teacher, therapist or spouse. Be yourself in the present moment. Be you for the pure joy of Being you. Most important, don’t try to be “the best” or compete with the people you are playing with. True play is not dependent on a score or outcome. It is experienced for the sheer joy of the experience, no pressure! It feels light and just happens “in the moment.”
Answer this question to raise the levels of play in your life: How often am I my true self? How often do I “try to be the parent or sibling” and it takes away from having fun with my child or sibling? How often do I assume a role instead of just Being myself and acting on what feels right for me to do or say from what feels right in my heart instead of some pre-conceived belief or thought?
2. Intrinsic Motivation is a MUST. The individual must be self-motivated with the purpose of the activity. When you are motivated to engage in an activity, the drive to do the activity causes a flow of energy that automatically makes everything happen with more ease and feels light and playful. When we “play” out of obligation, it defeats the purpose of play and stresses us out! For example: Do you run to the gym and to exercise because you LOVE the form of exercise you engage in, or do you avoid going to the gym or to do exercise because you view it as something you “have to” do to lose weight?
Answer this question to raise the levels of play in your life: What do I LOVE to do, what types of activities do I engage in weekly for the pure joy of experiencing them? How many of those bring me joy and am I passionate about doing? If you don’t know of any, make a list of new activities you are interested in learning or trying.
3. Internal Locus of Control.
The individual perceives they are in control of the activity. This allows them to trust themselves and others, to feel safe, express themselves and feel empowered. (Neumann 1971)
According to Michael K. Meyerhoff, Ed.D. people with a strong “internal” locus of control tend to be highly successful and quite happy in life. People with a strong “external” locus of control tend not to do well and, more importantly, tend to be chronically miserable. If you have a strong internal locus of control, you believe that success or failure is a result of your own sufficient or insufficient efforts. If you have a strong external locus of control, you believe that success or failure depends on factors such as luck, fate, circumstances, and the actions of other people.
Play is essential to our development because it contributes positively to the cognitive, physical, social, and emotional well being of children and youth. Play also offers an ideal opportunity for parents to engage fully with their children. Play is so important to optimal child development that it has been recognized by the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights as a right of every child. (Ginsburg K. in Pediatrics Vol. 119, No. 1, Jan 2007)
If you missed out on play, it’s never too late! Engage today in activities that bring you innate pleasure and joy for the sheer joy of doing them. Let go having to win all the time and of your “roles”. Know that you are the only one who is to be held responsible for the success or failure of your efforts. You are the driver of your life and add play into every day life activities so you lower your stress, and increase the happiness in your life.
Let me now how this article enriches your life, comment down below and share with your friends!
COME PLAY WITH US!!!
Saturday, February 23 from 4-6pm at Yogiiza Headquarters, where Yoga Teacher Jennifer Pansa and myself will be guiding you on an exciting experience called Empower The Empress, a two hour workshop that blends belly dance, yoga and martial arts to add more playful exercise and pleasure into you life! Click HERE for details.