A few weeks ago my husband Jeremy and I went to a trampoline park. That’s right: two grown-ass adults, without kids, paid for one hour of jump time and a pair of grippy socks. Did you know that at trampoline parks you have to buy grippy socks?
I’m laughing just typing that sentence.
Also, can you picture me jumping on a trampoline?
Again, just typing that sentence makes me laugh out loud. Literally lol.
And that, my friend, is the whole point.
I saw this post on Instagram the other day that said,
Play: Do something just because you want to.
And I felt so validated. So PROUD, even, that I made it a priority to do something playful and silly like take my husband on a date to a trampoline park. Who knows, maybe I’ll even have a birthday party there one day.
But in all seriousness, it is so easy to forget how important it is to have FUN. It is for me at least, when so much of my time and energy is taken up with managing my energy, managing my health, monitoring my supplement inventory, making new orders when supply is low, going to bed early, making sure I exercise every day (but not TOO hard, because if I overextend myself, then I’m in the danger zone).
All that JUST to function on a daily basis. We are not even talking about everything involved in managing a household, a marriage relationship, a needy pet (and man is she needy, just follow me on Instagram for evidence), a business, colleagues, staff, clients, new business…and I’m sure I’m not even mentioning everything that’s constantly on my mind.
Notice how play and fun are nowhere on those lists.
And let me just tell you: I take everything I do VERY seriously. If you have been following me for a little while now, you probably know exactly what I mean. I don’t half-ass ANYthing. I have incredibly high standards and even higher expectations and I’m harder on myself than I am on anyone else.
Again, where is the FUN?
My acupuncturist challenged me recently to find joy in moving my body. The obvious suggestion is dancing. Let me tell you: I am not a dancer. Oh, sure, I’ll get on the dance floor at your wedding. But it is not my go-to choice for movement.
It took me a bit to remember the last time I experienced true joy in movement, but it was a few years ago at my brother’s house. He has a huge trampoline in his backyard for my nephews to tire themselves out, and one year at Christmas I couldn’t resist getting up there with them. I laughed the entire time.
From that memory it was a quick and easy Google search to the closest trampoline park.
So there I am jumping away, noticing all the joy-inducing sensations:
- I’m so intensely focused (otherwise I might hurt myself) and all my worries are the furthest things from my mind.
- I’m flying.
- I’m floating.
- I’m weightless.
- My hair hovers like a crown above my head.
- Jeremy’s being goofy.
- I’m laughing uncontrollably.
You might be wondering what the heck any of this has to do with writing or creativity.
We often forget, but PLAY is an essential part of the creative process.
It means we aren’t taking our work—or ourselves—too seriously. It allows us to experiment and try new things without being attached to the outcome. It allows us to foster a mindset open to possibilities, to opportunities that our logical minds would never come up with on their own. It allows us to engage in something just because we WANT to. Not because we are being productive or efficient, but because it’s FUN.
Play keeps us young and reminds us that we are here to enjoy life. There is more to our existence than the daily grind and hustle, and if we aren’t having fun along the way, then what is the point?
So tell me: When was the last time you played? When was the last time you did something just because you wanted to? Let me know in the comments!