Play

The Meaning of Play

As humans, we often take life too seriously. Our lives are governed by our schedules, meetings, deliverables, deadlines, etc. This is fine, and obviously necessary when we have demanding careers, children, and households to run. Yet we don’t often think of the concept of PLAY as a necessary part of our lives.

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What does Play mean? It is not reserved for that once a year 2-week vacation where we frolic on the beach, forgetting all our worries – only to return to our crazy lives, barely remembering how free we felt for those 2 weeks. It is not about counting every moment till the weekend, when we can finally relax and be happy – only to return to Monday morning and our mundane, schedule-filled lives. It is about bringing that feeling of fun in every day of our lives. If we don’t enjoy the moment, what is the point of life?

I’m not suggesting we go to the beach everyday to experience Play! I’m not suggesting either that we don’t take our work lives seriously and forget about our commitments. I am suggesting, however, that we do something everyday which brings us joy and happiness. It can be simple things, like sharing a joke with a loved one, walking through nature, or reading a book we’ve been meaning to read for ages. If we looked upon every moment as a gift and every encounter as an opportunity, wouldn’t that change our outlook on life? Moreover, if we set aside 20 minutes, 40 minutes or an hour everyday for ourselves – to grow, contemplate, reflect and recharge – how much better would our crazy lives be?

I listened to a great meditation recently with Deepak Chopra and Oprah Experience • Product | Store and it reminded me of the power of choice we have each day. Here are some of the excerpts from it:

“As human beings with conscious awareness, we are the only beings on the Planet that can change our biology through our thoughts, feelings and intentions. Our cells are constantly eavesdropping on our thoughts and being changed by them. When we are anxious, depressed, frightened about the future, or worried about the past, we are sending our body messages that cause it to transform in an instant to help us react to the threat that faces us, even when no real threat exists. However, if we face each moment with present moment awareness, enthusiasm, happiness for life, optimism, and an openness to all of life’s surprises, then we send our cells a completely different positive message.

I believe that if we approach life as explained above, we can live a life of “Play”. By being positive internally, our outlook on life changes, and we cherish every moment life brings to us.

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We can think of Play in many ways. My concept of Play includes some of these things:

  • To lead a healthy and fit life which encompasses daily exercise and eating balanced, healthy foods. 
  • To share meaningful conversations with my loved ones 
  • To educate my mind through reading and learning
  • To gather with people and learn from experts and each other
  • To further my creativity through writing
  • To find peace through yoga and meditation
  • To enjoy good food and wine
  • To travel the world so I can experience all the myriad of cultures and experiences it has to offer
  • To appreciate the arts through film, music, dance, cooking
  • To laugh and be silly with family and friends with no fear of judgement

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