No instructions, no outcome, just play

Sometimes there is this child-like sense of curiosity or this feeling that you probably had as a child when you just wanted to play.

It’s things like reading a story, having paper and pens to create whatever you like or even a bunch of building blocks. There’s no instructions or a specified outcome that you need to meet and you have nothing to prove.

Once you’re done you can just move on to something else, the outcome doesn’t even really matter. At that age you’re just creating, using your mind and being free. In hindsight you might notice certain things you were good at or enjoyed more but in the moment that wasn’t a priority.

As an adult we’re often focused on the outcome, how good we are (often in comparison to others) and how much money we can make. At times, so much emphasis is put on making money that we’re made to feel like what we do is pointless, worthless and a waste of time if it generates no income.

Fun, joyful and sweet

If you could choose to shift your perception in order for your life to feel a little more wonderful, would you do it?

Sometimes we’re so bogged down by the challenges we face and the harsh realities of life, we don’t allow ourselves to believe that life can be fun, joyful and sweet.

We see those things as passing moments here and there rather than something that can become our everyday life.

As much as it might seem frustrating a large part of your experience comes from what you choose to focus on. If you’re only focused on the harsh and challenging aspects of life then you’ll end up thinking that there isn’t much else out there. However, we can all choose to see things differently.

It’s not about ignoring the challenges and difficulties but instead remembering that there is so much more to life.

Making time for fun

There is always so much emphasis on the work, on dedicating your time, effort and energy. There are quotes like the grind don’t stop or I’ll sleep when I’m dead.

And that’s fine. There’s nothing wrong with working hard, being dedicated and focusing on making money or building something (as in a non-physical thing like community).

But what about fun?

When was the last time you consciously set time aside to do something for fun, to make yourself laugh and bring a little joy into your life. The work, your work is great and it matters but it doesn’t have to be your whole life.

And the fun can be short and free, in fact it’s better that way. It could be watching Key and Peele skits on YouTube, having a solo dance party or maybe baking cupcakes.

As much as the work matters, there is also so much more to life that you might end up missing out on when you don’t make time for fun.

Worth celebrating

Good news is worth celebrating.

When you set yourself big goals and have high aspirations it can sometimes feel like the little wins aren’t worth celebrating.

But when you get a some good news, why not celebrate.

You don’t have to go all out and do something grand. Perhaps you just eat your favourite desert or put on your favoriye music and have a solo dance party.

The purpose of celebrating is to acknowledge the good bits instead of letting them pass you buy. So often we’re just focused on the end goal that we ignore what it took to get there.

Engrossed in the work

When you think of work, what sort of works come to mind?

Is it fun, exciting, thought provoking, challenging and interesting…

or is it more along the lines of boring, difficult, repetitive and time consuming?

Work often comes with a negative connotation that has nothing to do with the actual work.

The truth is work can be interesting and difficult or thought provoking and time consuming. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t enjoy it.

Of course if you’re inner monologue is on a loop about how boring your work is you probably won’t have a good time doing it.

The work often gets better once you engross yourself in it instead of having ‘negative’ feelings toward it.

Knowing when to leave (a message for the festive season and beyond)

Merry Christmas.

The festive season is an interesting time of year. You might have a wonderful time with loved ones having dinners, going to parties, going for drinks and catching up with those that are town to spend Christmas with their families.

But you might also find yourself in places you don’t want to be or don’t want to be in for a long time but it’s okay.

I’m currently learning the lesson that if you find yourself somewhere that you don’t want to be, leave (and that applies to life in general, not just for the festive season).

You don’t have to keep up appearances for the sake of trying to appease or to please. And sure it might feel uncomfortable leaving early or turning down an invite but it’s useful to get into the habit of being able to do what feels right for you.

I recently found myself in a place that I didn’t want to be, I suppose in hindsight you could call it an intuitive feeling, I knew that I needed to leave.

I was in a particular place and felt a little off, I waited a few moments to discern whether I needed to leave or if I just felt anxious. But I realised it wasn’t anxiety because I felt calm, so I decided to leave.

As soon as I left, I realised that I shouldn’t have been there in the first place but I also held compassion for myself (something else I’m learning to do).

A few years ago even if I wanted to leave my anxiety would have stopped me. I’d have forced myself to feel uncomfortable because back then I felt like I had to find a way to feel good in those situations. It never occurred to me that maybe there were some places that I just didn’t need to be.

So the message for today is don’t get so caught up in the festive season and the idea of having fun to the point where you forget to do what’s best for you.

It could be fun

Last year I wrote a few haikus. I didn’t do anything with them so I have no collection of opinions of how dreadful or amazingly amazing they are.

But I found 5, 7, 5 (the pattern of a haiku) to be a fun and interesting way to express a thought or feeling in a new way.

I’ve written poems before but writing a haiku forces me to think differently which I like.

It’s useful sometimes to try something new or to find a new way of doing something you’re familiar with. You might learn something from it and it could be fun.