When we are kids, we spend the majority of our time playing. We dream up elaborate scenes characters, and story lines and live them out as an adventure in the yard/barn, or backyard for the day. We engage in play, joy, and laughter and time would breeze by. We create. And for that time live that scenario to the fullest.
Then we get a little older and through structure, and discipline, we slowly work the fun, imagination and play right out of our lives. We decide that all that is wasted time. It's something little kids do, but not adults.
Not too long ago I had a group of seven 12 year old girls over for my daughters birthday party and they spent several hours outside, playing ghosts in the graveyard. I don't know why that amazed me as much as it did, maybe because they don't really look like little kids anymore, they look like pre-teens so I assumed they wanted only to do pre-teen stuff, but there was so much laughter, a little getting dirty and lots of fun between this group of girls. They still like to play! I love that!
Here's why play and imagination is so essential to keep in your life even into adult hood
-There's no rules, there are no rules because in your imagination, you do what's fun. That calls for doing stuff that you feel inspired to do, right in that moment. How often does that happen as an adult? We have a nasty habit in the adult world to 'do the responsible thing' and categorize things like fun into 'something only kids do'.
-It feels really good! Go play tag with someone, just the excitement of getting caught and barely slipping away from another's grasp is such a rush ;). Or chasing another to a precarious spot. So. much. fun. Make your kids laugh, read a story in a goofy voice, do something a little unexpected. Kids love to see adults acting silly. And it's a really great way to break up a bad behavior rut ( you might be familiar with these if you've seen a 2-4 year old at 5:00pm after daycare pick up when you are trying to make a supper plan)
-Your imagination is the way in which you create something outside of your current reality. People underestimate this all the time. If you don't spend time imagining and creating something new, how do you ever get something beyond your current reality? I have for the past 16 years worked in the same department at my part time job, but I have held probably 6 different roles in that time, and each time I shifted to something different, it always started with an inspiration, a spark in my mind that said, you know what, I sortof want to do something like this, or what if we just shifted things this way or I could take on this charge. And then I put it out there, I brought a voice to it, and I waited for the opportunity to arrive and it always did.
Here is my best advice for you, next time you feel stuck in a rut, like you just aren't happy doing what you do, or if you just need a pick me up. Go play. Go imagine. Go do something that inspires you and gets your creative juices flowing. Spend time thinking and imagining what you want your life to look like. Imagine yourself as a 10 year old what would be the best job to do, try or create? How can you get more play in your life? Just imagine!