Close your eyes.
Imagine the child version of you.
You’re running around through the field.
There’s long grass and flowers.
The wind is blowing trough your hair.
You are laughing.
You are touching the grass, maybe running your fingers over the flowers.
Maybe you are making car sounds.
Maybes you are singing.
You are there.
You are in your full essence of playfulness.
You are being followed by your guardian. They are calling your name. You feel loved and supported as you are fully being you.
The importance of play.
Somewhere along the way we have become the adults of the children who once were.
Who took time to play because play was our job. It’s how we learned. How we explored the world around us. It’s how we learned to live. How to love. How we connected.
When you think back to your childhood what was your favourite form of play?
How did you express yourself creatively?
How did you move freely?
How did you play?
I myself loved playing barbies and babies.
I pretended I was a school teacher and would line up all my stuffed animals on my bed or on the couch. I would teach them.
I liked to play outside with my friends in the complex we lived in.
I liked riding bikes over to my friends houses to see if they wanted to come out and play.
I liked colouring and drawing pictures.
I made lots of books.
I would spend time dressing up in my room and singing at the top of my lungs. (My parents loved this one ☺️)
The best part about all of this is that I was free to be me. I got to do all the things that made me feel good inside. There wasn’t a filter or anyone saying no. Because it was part of my development- as it is everyone’s.
So where does it start to fray.
When do we stop playing?
Is it when we go from play dates to hanging out?
Is it when hormones kick in?
Or is it when our parents start to teach us that “we’re old enough” to understand and take on more responsibility?
Maybe it’s a mix of all those things.
Maybe it’s because we aspire to be adults from a younger age and want the freedom we see our parents have.
So how can we bring back more play into our lives?
Play is good for our hearts and soul.
The letting loose and letting go of our phones. Being with ourselves or with others laughing and being completely present.
Being phone free and fully engaged.
Maybe that’s the newest version of play.
Working in a kindergarten class I’m pretty lucky. I get to witness this playfulness everyday. The wonder on their faces. The full engagement of their bodies when music comes on. The purest energy of childlike wonder.
I want to dance around the kitchen.
Sing loudly in my car and not turn the music down at stop lights.
I want to go out in public and laugh loudly and smile at strangers and say hello.
I want to play team sports and run around like a chicken with my head cut off.
I want to spend time with my friends and feel the same way I did at slumber parties… never wanting them to end.
We all deserve to play.
We are humans. We crave the freedom playfulness brings.
There’s no doubt this looks different to everyone, but the underlying feeling remains the same.
So how can you play?
How can you fully let go and honour your inner child?
Play. Even just a little… it goes a long way.