We are generation always-looking-for-balance (whatever that means), and many of us don’t do such a great job of creating it all the time. Yes, work is important, but not the most important – contrary to common practice (I’m not going to say belief here, because I think most of us would agree that work is NOT the most important thing in life, although many of us often treat it as though it is).
But there are actually 3 aspects of life we MUST be investing in if we have any hope of being genuinely happy and fulfilled: 1. Work (you got that one down already), 2. love (aka meaningful relationships) and, believe it or not, PLAY! Meaning play is NOT a bonus, it is a necessity!
But why then, do so many of us treat it as though it’s a luxury we can’t afford. An unnecessary extra that we may make time for every once and awhile if we’re feeling particularly indulgent.
Did you hear this? Play is NOT an option. NOT a bonus. NOT extra fluff. It is Necessary. And not every few months or so. Pretty much every day. At least a little time for fun, pleasure, enjoyment, silliness, laughter, or whatever floats your boat, every day.
I realized recently that although I have 2 small children and play with them often, I haven’t really been taking time to just have fun as a grownup. Although playing with my small children is a lot of fun, they are both very young still so there is a lot of parenting and monitoring and corralling involved when we play. So not all that care free.
And thus I began to feel as though I really wanted to have a vacation. Some time to do a lot of playing and put aside most of my responsibilities, commitments, schedules, or even plans that come with my everyday life here in Vancouver.
At least a little time to just sit. And breathe. And live.
So we decided to go to Hawaii, and boy was that ever great – and a lot more necessary than I had thought.
But I’m one of those people who doesn’t really go away very often because I usually talk myself out of it due to the hassle of planning, packing, and getting ready – sometimes I think I need a vacation just to rest after all that comes with planning a vacation! Not to mention having to spend that large sum of money that seems to disappear much faster than my tan lines.
But as I get older, I dare say, I’m getting more the wiser and realizing that both having some fun everyday and also taking the bigger breaks and going away and having a whole heap of time to play is absolutely as imperative as they say it is.
And I know this to be especially true because of the conversation I had with my husband the other day after arriving home.
Don’t ask me why, but for some reason I was doing the cowboy math (I’m actually a math geek at heart), in my head about how much our trip cost us and estimated it to have been a few hundred dollars per day including all expenses (flight, accommodation, food, car etc.)
And after announcing this sum to my husband he said to me: Yeah that is a lot of money to spend in a day! Have you thought about what you would have done if we had stayed home and had had a few hundred dollars to spend here in Vancouver every day for a week?
And do you know what I said without even missing a beat? “Yes. I would have saved that money up and gone to Hawaii.”
Case and point.
We need to play every day, and we need the bigger breaks as well. We need to take it easy more often than most of us do. We need time to just enjoy life without pressure, expectations, or rushing around.
It’s not a luxury. It’s an essential.
So go, play, rest, relax and enjoy just being a little sometimes, or even a lot, okay?
But you don’t need my permission. And if you do, you have it. In spades.
I’m also curious: If you had $500 at your disposal everyday for a week, what would you spend it on?
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I specializes in working with and treating successful professionals who find themselves feeling overwhelmed, stressed, anxious, or even depressed and don’t want to be feeling that way. I help my clients find balance and happiness in their lives, and meaningful connection in their relationships. I am also a speaker, workshop facilitator, blogger, scoper, and recovered ‘Friends’ junkie. You can read and see more from me on my Good For Me Blog.