Are you making time to play?

On viewing all the celebrations recently around the world for ST.Patricks day, it occurred to me how creative we all can be when we put our minds to it and how great it is to have fun with family, friends and community. Here is a little article I wrote recently..and would really love to emphasise the IMPORTANCE OF PLAY in all of our lives. I hope you enjoy reading the article… then go have some fun TODAY.

If it feels like you have less free time and fewer unstructured “play” hours in your life, you’re not alone. Consider these statistics:

  • The average married couple works 26 percent longer each year than similar working couples did thirty years ago.
  • Leisure time among children ages 12 and under has declined from 40 percent of a child’s day in 1981 to 25 percent of a child’s day in 1997, and about one in four adults reports no leisure-time or physical activity.

“Play is like the lost key… It unlocks the door to inner self”

Feeling busy, loads of demands…over working..always on the go, always rushed, always something left to do. With mobile phones and blackberries interrupting family moments, quiet time, wi-fi and internet connections at every other spot beckoning us all hours of the night and day, it’s hard to separate “play” from “work.” Yet to maintain balance in our lives, and for our ultimate well-being, play is critical for good health and a balanced lifestyle.

Physical Play is so important for a child’s growth, development and health.  The laughter, the interaction between child and parent, the development of relationships is critical to ones sanity and well being.. Play is crucial at every stage of life. In play, we discover pleasure, cultivate feelings of accomplishment, and acquire a sense of belonging. When we play, we learn and mature and find an outlet for stress.

When we are completely involved in play our cares and worries disappear. Playing a game of cards, articulate, or something physical like squash, soccer or being thoroughly engrossed in a good novel, allows us to feel pleasurably alive and light-hearted. There is nothing like play to allow us to be present in the moment.

  • Switch-off. Turn off the television, computer, mobile phone for designated times of the day or week..
  • Be creative. What physical activities do you and your children enjoy? A walk in the park, messing with a ball together, making a jig-saw, baking, the possibilities are endless. Recall what you used to enjoy doing yourself a s a child – why not make some time and relive the experience?
  • Include others. Invite your friends over… just like you used to when you were a kid. Nothing planned, nothing structured. Let yourself have fun…
  • Think physical. Go for a walk, ride your bike, go for a swim or a run.
  • Pretend. Pretend you don’t have any cares or worries. Pretend you have all the time in the world to laugh and play and enjoy. Pretend there is no moment other than this.
  • Plan play like you plan other important things to do. Allow yourself to just be…Interact as much as you can with your children, make memories to treasure forever!

Laugh lots every day.