To Play or Not to Play: Is It Even A Question?

April 25, 2016

 “My childhood may be over, but that doesn’t mean playtime is.” – Ron Olson

 

Over the weekend I was fortunate to find myself in one of my favourite spots with some of my favourite people. The photo above is part of the river that sits below the old school house that we were staying in. Each time I’ve been there I’ve experienced spaciousness, peacefulness and great opportunities to connect with those around me. This past weekend was certainly no different. Then yesterday afternoon happened, I was introduced to the rope swing!

 

“We are never more fully alive, more completely ourselves, or more deeply engrossed in anything than when we are playing.” – Charles Schaefer

 

I’m lucky to have large doses of play mixed into my personal and professional life. Our program days are experiential, meaning they are filled with opportunities to learn by doing (a lot of that through play) with reflection. I believe play is so important, especially if we are to foster and embody exploring the possibilities, discovering potential and acting authentically. To play or not to play? I know what I chose yesterday; and will continue to choose when that question comes up.

 

“Play is the exultation of the possible.” -Martin Buber

 

My friend, having been on the swing before, showed me the way. Then the rope was handed over to me. Any doubts, worries and fears I had, quickly dissolved as I swung out over the water and back in, high up onto the bank where I began. What followed next was multiple go’s. Chances to experiment and grow in confidence. Plenty of laughs. Increased levels of energy. And most importantly for me, a reminder of why this post’s title finishes with, ‘Is it even a question’. Play can look, sound and feel slightly differently for us all. But it’s benefits are there for all to see.

 

“Play is the highest form of research.” – Albert Einstein

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