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What does prioritising play look like?

This is a tricky one. 

Prioritising play is about keeping your eyes open for what I call invitations around us to interact with situations and people.

Prioritising play also means scheduling it into our agenda. So not just all the things we have to do, even though we could think play as something we have to do, though highly unlikely that you think play is something that you have to do, right?

So, it’s something you’d like to do and you might even feel guilty about playing because of all they told to us when we were growing up.

So we’ve got that to overcome.

I could tell you all the benefits about play and how it expands our brain, how it gives us a different idea of time, how it resets our nervous system.

How it gets us to see the beautiful in the world and the exciting and the interesting and how it fires up our curiosity, but you’re not really bought on it yet.

You don’t really think play is that important.

You have your ways of playing but try but think back to a special time where you just had the most amazing day that’s all it is really.

That’s the idea. Bringing that into our lives with everything that we do, essentially.

That’s the goal is to make everything as if it was a game as we were really playing the game of life.

So like, okay, so how do you play any sort of game? You have to find out the rules. 

We’re living by a whole set of rules. The first question to probably ask ourselves is: are these rules actually working for us? Are these rules allowing our lives to be fun?

Or do they stifle us and make us do stuff? Are we pushing, rather than creating a situation that is so enticing that it pulls us towards it?

That’s our aim. Is the crate situation that pulls us towards it. We want to get on with it and we don’t do anything else.

If we go to James Carse’s work on finite and infinite games. He suggests that in a game, let’s say life, we can treat it as a finite game or an infinite game.

In a finite game the rules are defined, you cannot change them. You cannot even question them. But an infinite game, where the game could continue forever, or as long as you want. 

If you’re having fun, you could decide together to change the rules. So what are the rules to start with, that we’re living our life? What are your rules? 

That is a tricky question. And I’m going to go back to that, probably in another conversation, another brainstorm about what rules do we live our lives by?

Essentially they’re all the things you feel like you have to do. And then there’s the social norm too of course. Unspoken rules.

And there are reasons behind all of these things. But if our aim is to reach our humanity and touch other people’s lives, and make our lives have more meaning because we’re continually in a state of wonder. It can even be like a more private state of wonder that you enjoy, you don’t need to be all wow’s all the time. Keep inside yourself. Share your wows with smiles, with your eyes.

And that’s who I wanted to say right now, but probably well, there’s priorities, more just prioritising play look like what prioritising play also looks like calling somebody up to do something unexpected, like, you want to go to the park and play frisbee?

That’s prioritising plays.

If you’ve got children, or you’ve got friends that have children and hang out with these guys, interact and learn from them. Also animals, like dogs and cats can take us out of our buzzing brains.

Prioritising play is what it essentially means is prioritising the things that bring you joy, and that make you stop for a moment. Stop for a moment. And enjoy whatever it is you’re doing.

Prioritising play means trying something new, risking to enjoy the process.

As Shelly Johnson says:

Playfulness is the attitude we take toward life when we focus on presence and process with attitudes of openness, curiosity, and joy.

She then goes on to say that:

Perfectionism, on the other hand, makes us focus on performance and product and encourages anxiety, criticalness, and discouragement.

Much more on the connection between playfulness and perfectionism coming soon!


That’s some thoughts for now.