Have you forgotten the pure joy you get from engaging in play?

Have you forgotten the pure joy you get from engaging in play?

When we were children, we rode our bikes outside, played catch and hide and seek, and ran around with our friends having fun. We were never bored, and our parents had to call us in from outside and scold us for being late to dinner!

While playing, we enter a flow state. We are not focused on the self, how we look, feel, think, etc. Instead, we are absorbed in the activity and free from the constrictions of time. We often don’t want it to end, and when it does, we often want to do it again.

As adults, we can always reach for that feeling we had as kids when we were uninhibited and completely immersed in play.

What did you love to do as a child that excited you? Was it simply goofing off and making jokes with friends? Throwing a frisbee or listening to records and playing air guitar? Dive bombing into a swimming pool or lake or sword fighting with sticks? Remember dancing, charades, and riding bikes with your friends? When did you stop playing, and why?

Think back about what you were naturally drawn to as a child and see what resonates now. Allow yourself to identify, without judgment, the things you loved as a child.

Notice how you feel when you imagine playing in similar ways. For example, did you love horseback riding? Imagine horseback riding now. Or dancing as a child? Imagine dancing similarly now. Think of something you enjoyed so much you got lost in time. When you looked up from what you were immersed in, you didn’t even realize how much time passed.

I recommend watching the Tom Hanks movie “Big,” listen to your younger self, and play!

December 13, 2022

Grown-ups can play

Have you forgotten the pure joy you get from engaging in play?

When we were children, we rode our bikes outside, played catch and hide and seek, and ran around with our friends having fun. We were never bored, and our parents had to call us in from outside and scold us for being late to dinner!

While playing, we enter a flow state. We are not focused on the self, how we look, feel, think, etc. Instead, we are absorbed in the activity and free from the constrictions of time. We often don’t want it to end, and when it does, we often want to do it again.

As adults, we can always reach for that feeling we had as kids when we were uninhibited and completely immersed in play.

What did you love to do as a child that excited you? Was it simply goofing off and making jokes with friends? Throwing a frisbee or listening to records and playing air guitar? Dive bombing into a swimming pool or lake or sword fighting with sticks? Remember dancing, charades, and riding bikes with your friends? When did you stop playing, and why?

Think back about what you were naturally drawn to as a child and see what resonates now. Allow yourself to identify, without judgment, the things you loved as a child.

Notice how you feel when you imagine playing in similar ways. For example, did you love horseback riding? Imagine horseback riding now. Or dancing as a child? Imagine dancing similarly now. Think of something you enjoyed so much you got lost in time. When you looked up from what you were immersed in, you didn’t even realize how much time passed.

I recommend watching the Tom Hanks movie “Big,” listen to your younger self, and play!

Photograph of WeHeal Sr. Health Mentor & Lead Content Creator
Lisa Rice
Sr. Health Mentor & Director of Content and Promotion