I know, I know, you aren't the playing parent. You might get anxious even thinking about playing for any extended periods with dinosaurs or baby dolls. Perhaps your other half is the more fun parent, the one that gets out there and gets dirty. My husband is always helping construct forts, sand castles or toboggan runs. But someone has to get dinner ready, am I right?
I get it. I am kind of that parent too, except I am not. I am fun. I like fun. I just don't allow myself to prioritize it enough.
How do you make the time with competing demands? First, try and ignore that voice that reminds you you are drowning in deadlines or alerts you to feeling embarrassed or uncomfortable about getting silly as an adult. Live in the moment. What can you let go of now? What “should's” aren't that important in this minute?
Second, remind yourself of the benefits you will experience. Think of the last time you had a silly and rewarding time. Remember your child's smile as you agreed to get down on the carpet to play. Think Merry Go Round's you had to assist your child onto and ended up enjoying yourself. Reflect on the board game nights that had the whole family laughing. That time your partner's silly antics made you cry with laughter. These are the memory makers. We often play on vacation, why only then? Play connects us to ourselves and to others. We need more of this, don't we?
I wrote recently that I am bringing silly back into my life and the many great reasons to do this. Having a laugh, a smile and connection is good for you. How often do we tell our kids to get off the screen and get outside...TO PLAY. Why? Because it is good for them. So step away from the screen or phone and engage and connect with your kids, act silly with a friend, or do something terribly un-serious and very fun on your own. Play, silly and fun isn't just for kids!
Here are a few ideas that could get you started:
I read a very interesting article this week on a woman's experience being sober and how much is marketed to her as a woman to drink to fit in, to be or have fun, to deal with life or to lighten up. A big takeaway for me was the idea presented of alcohol being the only vehicle with which many of us give ourselves permission to unwind and have a little fun. This is not necessary. It is 10:23 a.m., quite appropriately I have no drink, there are no kids at home and I think I will do that handstand. I know it will bring a welcome smile to my face. I wish the same for you!