Often we talk about working hard. People talk about being responsible and “adulting” types of things. We have our jobs, retirement plans, and health on our minds. Most of us also have politics on the mind with all of the craziness that is happening in our White House. But let me tell you, the most important thing you can to do maximize your productivity, impact your health, lower your stress and even have an easier time adulting is to put some serious attention on recreation.
The difference between grown ups and kids – recreation vs. play
We don’t use the term “recreation” to describe what children do. We call what children do “play”. Through their play, children are able to form connections about themselves, their emotions and the world. Play is an absolutely essential part of development. We know this. What would you say if I told you that the most important thing you can do for YOUR development, growth and mental health is to play, or as we adults more often refer to it, enjoy some recreation.
Looking at the meaning of the word “recreate”
Let’s take a look at the word recreate. English is a pretty cool language because the root words are often visible. Let me show you what I see in the word recreate. RE-create. When we take time to play as adults, we are literally enabling ourselves to re-create. This can mean we re-create connection with ourselves, with our inner beliefs, with our loved ones, with nature or countless other ways.
When you are enjoying yourself, your natural vibration is higher. You feel better. There is a reason it’s been said laughter is the best medicine. It heals! But recreation doesn’t have to include laughter, although it often works out that way. As our spirits lighten, we find it easier to laugh. In fact, most things feel easier when our spirits begin to lighten.
We know we bring about what we think about. If you let stress get to you, begin to feel negative or experience fearful thinking, recreation can be a really quick and effective way to pivot those feelings and thoughts into something more positive with a higher vibration. You’ll immediately begin to energetically attract more positive experiences into your experience. Having a bad day? Get some recreation! Feeling negative? Same, go re-create!
When we enjoy recreation, we are literally engaging in RE-creation. We re-create the connection to our inner voice and to the universe. In many cases, connecting with joy and fun allows us to think more clearly, reduces stress, and depending upon your recreation, connect us with nature or other people. For me, I include yoga and (FUN!) exercise like dance as part of my recreation. You could incorporate anything YOU love as long as it isn’t your normal work!
How to fit recreation into a busy schedule
- Making recreation really fun makes it easy to fit into your schedule. Its nice to look forward to something! And we tend to look forward to things that are fun!
- Be intentional by combining time with people you love and a form of recreation can be a great way to fit time to re-create into your busy schedule. The added bonus is that you have an appointment set with someone which makes you more likely to actually take the time to have some fun.
- Get out and DO something. Go to a park, take a walk, enjoy a paddle, do a dance, take in a movie, go for dinner, play cards, share some laughs by hosting a party, invite a friend over. It can be anything! I find movement to be cathartic to I often try to include movement into a portion of my recreation. That can be a nice thing to do. Its not essential, but you will likely find activities that include some form of movement more transformational (even it it’s parking a longgggg (a mile or two) way from where you play to go sit for dinner.
- Avoid “shoulding” on yourself. Make sure that the recreation you choose is something that feeds YOU. You aren’t going to benefit from recreation that feeds someone else. An example from my own life might be camping. I am a reluctant camper. I love being outdoors, love it! But sleeping in a tent isn’t what brings me joy. Here’s how I approach that. If camping isn’t your thing, even if you go with people you love, it might not feed your soul. However, if you can combine the camping (which maybe you don’t love) with something you do love (like photography and time to sit around the camp fire chatting with people you love) you’ll have a totally different experience and feel nourished. When it comes to recreation… there is no “shoulding”. I “should” go for a walk, I “should” go see that movie, etc. Do what you love!! And if the primary activity isn’t what you love, be creative about finding ways to work in things you do love.
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All my love,