The importance of play

Play (verb): to engage in activity for enjoyment and recreation rather than a serious or practical purpose.

This is one of the meanings of play you’ll find in a dictionary.

In the vernacular, we might say play is ‘fooling around’ or ‘doing things for no good reason’ or ‘figuring out how something works without reading the instruction manual’.

For me, play is a sign that we’re not taking ourselves too seriously. It’s a great way to learn new ways of doing things without any performance anxiety pressures.

Of course, you can also play with something or someone to add another dimension.

Only problem these days, now that we’re all grown up and adult, is we think play is childish. If people see you playing with stuff instead of doing something constructive – you’re wasting time!

I don’t know about you but I’ve learnt heaps of stuff by playing around with the software applications on my computer at work, when I was supposed to be doing something else, only to find a better way of doing what I was supposed to be doing as a paid adult.

Another form of play I indulge in while at work is doodling. Isn’t it funny how people get upset when you doodle during their meetings, when they’re talking. Just as well they can’t see down the phone line during those conference calls we’re all doing instead of travelling.

The next time someone has a go at you for doodling, suggest they do some research. They could start with the  Doodle article on Wikipedia.

Next time you’re feeling a little stressed give yourself permission to play – you won’t regret it. If anybody objects, do what you did when you were a kid – tell them to mind their own business!

Play

Thanks for dropping by, Peter.

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