What do you do for fun?
Seems like an innocent enough question, and yet it baffles people. Brings them to an absolute halt.
When we were kids, we just knew how to do this. It was our raison d'etre. Our life's mission. Yet, somewhere along the way we internalized the notion that children have fun, but adults have to work.
And fun began to get pushed down to the bottom of our priority list.
As entrepreneurs, we typically have a mantra of "work first, play later". But later never seems to come. There is always work to do; always something that seems more worthy of our time.
Ironically, the days where we take it a little easier on ourselves—playing and having fun—we'll end up getting more done, have more energy to work on things, and be more focused.
Fun is good.
Having fun—and more specifically laughing—strengthens our immune system, reduces stress and anxiety, and gives our heart, lungs and diaphragm a much needed workout. When we have fun, we are more likely to meet and engage with others, and create lasting relationships.
Having fun has also been connected with things like reduced pain, weight loss, lower blood pressure, and a longer life. Yes, please.
The best part? Fun changes our internal dialog, making it more positive and supportive. And you know how important our thinking patterns are, right?!
Let's put fun back on the priority list.
Fun is the proverbial pinch of salt that brings out the flavor of your life.
Here are 7 things you can do to start having more fun every single day:
- Seek out and have adventures. Go for a walk around your neighborhood looking for lost treasures. Get lost on purpose and explore a new part of town. Go on a scavenger hunt through a store looking for as many purple items as you can find. Hide love notes for people to find all over the city. It doesn't matter what you do, just go do it!
- Get lost in the moment. Crank up your favorite song and dance around the room, get immersed in a good book, loose yourself in nature. Whatever you choose, set aside your to-do lists (and that nagging guilt), and be present with the task at hand.
- Learn a new skill. Take a knitting class, learn how to kayak, take up slam poetry. Nothing jolts you out of your comfort zone and forces you to be present like learning a new skill. Yes, it can be frustrating. But it can also be incredibly rewarding and fun.
- Laugh. Tell a joke, watch a goofy video on YouTube, go to a comedy show, rent a funny movie, or tell embarrassing stories with your friends over a glass of wine. Whatever it is, do it. And do it often!
- Do what you loved as a child. Chances are, the things that you loved to do when you were 10 years old are things that you will still love to do now. Ask yourself this: what are my most fun memories from childhood? What was I doing?
- Have a fun buddy. According to research, everything is more fun when you do it with someone else. (Yes, even that.) Find a friend or loved one to do things with, even if it's walking around the mall, Skyping while watching your favorite TV show, or going for a run.
- Schedule it in. Okay. I know that this one sounds like the least fun to do, but it's a biggie. Create an alarm on your phone, make a standing appointment every day, and honor it. Most importantly, give yourself permission to bring fun into your every day life.
Putting it into practice
What's one thing you can do today to start making fun a priority