“Even though you’re growing up, you should never stop having fun.” ~ Nina Dobrev
“’Have fun’ is my message. Be silly. You’re allowed to be silly. There’s nothing wrong with it.” ~ Jimmy Fallon
What’s the most fun you’ve had in the last month? If you can’t immediately come up with 4-5 things then you are need of a fun makeover!
There’s an old sales adage that says people buy emotionally but they justify their purchase with logic. That’s the opposite of how we view fun in our life. We think the logical way to look at fun is as a luxury. Something to fit in around our “real” responsibilities like work and taking care of everyone else. This type of thinking gets us frazzled and flustered, and we just forget about fun.
You are in luck. Here is a research study that allows you to toss logic in the back seat and let fun drive for a while.
Penn State University professor Dr. Careen Yarnal has proven that a life without fun is actually unhealthy! Dr. Yarnal says,
“Our research has shown that when women get out there and play, the benefits are amazing. They cope better with stress, which sets up protective mechanisms that contribute to health and well-being. And if they play with others, it creates bonding and they get the benefit of social support, as well. Just as we know play is healthy for children, helping them blow off steam, learn, experiment, and make friends, we’re finding the same to be true for adult women. When it comes to stress prevention, play is like wearing a suit of armor.”
Furthermore, there is Japanese research that shows spending as little as 2 hours a month laughing or listening to your favorite music has as big an effect on blood pressure as eliminating salty foods or even shedding 10 pounds!
Have I got your attention yet? So here are some tips on putting the joy of fun back into your life.
Get Your Groove On
What causes you to lose time and get in the flow? Is it riding a bike, reading a novel, knitting, baking, gardening, or hiking? Get back in the flow of those activities. If it’s been so long you can’t remember what you used to do for fun, experiment with some new ideas and see which ones light up your life.
Put Fun First
Prioritize fun. Take a minute and think about all the things you did today. Think about everything you did this week. Which ones were absolutely necessary and which ones were not as essential? Where can you turn the tables and put fun in front of chores, errands, or other extras in your life? Studies have shown that housework is not an effective cortisol reducer. It doesn’t lower your stress level whereas play is a sure-fire fix. So, wouldn’t it feel better to play first and then get to that other stuff from a more renewed place? I bet you get more done in less time.
Unleash Your Inner Muse
Do something creative. Let your inner muse come out to play. Paint, finger paint, draw, quilt, garden, write, cook, or take up a craft. Discover something you can do with your hands that taps into your sense of wonder and excitement.
Enjoy Some Funky Chicken Fun
Add music to your daily activities. Create playlists that boost your mood and move your feet. Who says you can’t dance in the kitchen when cooking dinner or doing the dishes? It’s ok to rock out in the morning when you’re getting ready. Play tunes that evoke fun memories or jazz you up for the day ahead. Either way, get out of your head and into your body and have fun.
Fun with Fitness
Here is where you can really be a kid again. You could go to the gym and walk on the treadmill but that’s what all the adults are doing. Why not burn calories hula hooping, jumping rope, or skipping? Or have you caught the Pickleball craze yet? Find some fun, active play that moves your body and makes you smile. That way both your logical mind and your inner child will be happy; you can feel good and feel good about it at the same time!
“Today was good. Today was fun. Tomorrow is another one.” ~ Dr. Seuss
You owe it to yourself to interject loads of fun into your daily life. After all, it’s good for you on multiple levels. So, when your mind says you are too busy or it’s frivolous, kick that thought to the curb and go play.