“ The opposite of play is not work — the opposite of play is depression.”- Dr. Stuart Brown
Dr. Brown says when play is happening, almost all of these 7 things are firing.
- Play is Apparently Purposeless
Play does not seem essential because it does not provide us our daily needs for food or pay our bills, but it’s not that play has no purpose. The purpose of play is not evident right away. It’s when we lack play in our lives that we see its necessity.
- Play is Voluntary
There is no law that says we must play. It is something we must enter into freely. Ever been forced to “play” a game, or do something “fun” that is not fun for you? We have to unleash the protective measure against our vulnerability to play.
- Play has an Inherent Attraction
Play is natural. Research suggests we are all wired by evolution to play. What you find fun may not be fun for me and vice versa. Find what you love and what’s stimulating for you. Play cures boredom, and if you’ve ever been bored try something new.
- Play involves a Freedom from Time
When we play we lose track of time. We are in such a present state that time doesn’t matter because we are so focused on the activity of that moment.
- Play involves a Diminished Consciousness of Self
During play our minds are free of thought in the sense that we aren’t focused on thinking. We don’t have to worry about what other people think of us, or what we look like. We aren’t thinking about ourselves at all.
- Play involves Improvisational Potential
Play can allow you to imagine new possibilities and see what follows. We can discover new (maybe just new to us) patterns of thinking, feeling, and acting in the world. These new patterns can provide new ways of being and connecting with others.
- Play produces Continuation Desire
Play desires more play. If you truly entered into a state of play you don’t want it to end and find ways to continue.
Do you experience any of these 7 properties on a regular basis? If not, you need to schedule more time for PLAY. If you need help on how to do that, or want ideas comment below and Amanda can help you find play escape.