Playing for Keeps
The need for play does not end with adulthood. Play can be active, building our energy, or can be calming, promoting improved self-control in other areas of life.
How one plays evolves across life, from building with blocks to building homes or creating meals with locally grown ingredients. from playing with dolls to building meaningful friendships in community organizations, and from counting balls on a wire to crunching numbers on a balance sheet. For those who love their work, they often describe what they do as "feeling like play", the work bringing joy and meaning into their lives.
Play can improve one's mood, even bringing joy into the moment. Play allows one to express powerful feelings without the use of words. It is a place to practice new skills or try out new ways of looking at the world. When one is bored or frustrated, play can be a safe way to vent off powerful or negative emotions. Interactive play can help promote understanding and learning.
Today is a great day to play. I will find a few moments in an appropriate place to act playful and notice how it affects my mood.