Play time is one of the 7 daily essential mental activities that we need to expose our mind to in order to optimise our brain and perform at our very best.
As children, we were the masters of playtime. It is a pity to see how in adulthood, some of us have disconnected with our inner child, an aspect of ourselves characterised by vivid imagination, loving kindness, innocence, unconditional love and a tension-free way of living. Reconnecting with this dimension of ourselves will significantly increase our capacity for professional wellbeing.
Playfulness, which may seem like a frivolous, unimportant behaviour with no apparent purpose, enhances our capacity to innovate, adapt, and master changing circumstances. It is not just an escape. It can help us integrate and reconcile difficult or contradictory circumstances and it can show us a way out of our problems.
Remember that success at work doesn’t depend on the amount of time you work; it depends upon the quality of your work. And the quality of your work is highly dependent on your personal wellbeing.
Taking the time to replenish yourself through play is therefore one of the best things you can do for your career. When the project you’re working on hits a serious glitch, taking some time out to play and have a few laughs does a lot more than take your mind off the problem.
When you play, you engage the creative side of your brain and silence your “inner editor,” that psychological barrier that censors your thoughts and ideas. This can often help you see the problem in a new light and generate fresh, creative solutions.
So if you want to alleviate stress, refresh your mind and body, see “problems” in new ways, trigger creativity and innovation, increase your energy levels and prevent burnout, make sure you take some time to host a regular game night with friends, go bowling, play pool or miniature golf, sing karaoke, throw a frisbee, fly a kite, play with a pet, surround yourself with playful people, draw, paint, build stuff with science kits or legos, learn some magic tricks….anything that awakens your inner child.