play - engage in activity for enjoyment and recreation rather than a serious or practical purpose
Play is vital part of human life.
It not only ensures proper childhood development, but it also is necessary to attain a fulfilling adult life.
Plus, it's just a healthy thing to do.
It's good for:
- Motor skills
- Social function/health
- Cognitive growth
- Decreasing stress
- Enjoyment (releases dopamine)
In fact it's so important, many animals will forgo food and give up energy to partake in play.
Just look at man's best friend, a dog.
"Dogs spend half their calories wagging their tails to pheremonally announce their presence and availability for play."-Robert Sapolsky
Humans, however, are different animals.
We usually have too many calories (which play is good for). So giving up calories and using energy isn't something we value in first world countries.
But consider the two things humans value most: money and time.
And now consider acting like our four legged best friend and giving up the things we value to enjoy play? That's right, give up some money or time to play. If dogs had money or any concept of time, I'm sure they'd give both up quickly for us to throw that ball one more time.
It's difficult to do. Especially with all the stuff we have to do throughout the day. But every now and then we should make the "sacrifice" and play.
We never remember the money we spend or the extra hours we worked.
But we will remember the time we had when we played with the ones we loved.
“And in the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.” — Edward J. Stieglitz
Some TEDtalks to watch:
If that's not enough, check out this playlist of educational videos on play
I usually try to end every post with a charity or organization that works to help make the world a better place.
But in this post, I advise you to donate your own money and/or time to allow yourself to enjoy some unorganized play. If you don't know where to start, take a look at the 7 patterns of play.
Because if we all play a little more, maybe we'll become better people. And if we have more better people, than maybe the world will be a better place...