Photo Credit: Zachary Nelson,
Photo Credit: Zachary Nelson,

Randy Pausch, Professor at Carnegie Mellon University once said,

“Never, ever underestimate the importance of having fun.”

The act of experiencing fun lightens our hearts and it’s beneficial to our minds.

Why’s Fun Not Taken More Seriously?

For many adults it becomes a life pattern to postpone play and instead work harder. Our priorities change as we grow older. In my 20s I worked hard and I also played hard. In my 30s I spent more time working harder and less time playing. Once I had my family, there seemed to be less time for play and more time to be a responsible parent and provider.

George Bernard Shaw said,

“We don’t stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing.”

It seems many adults create their own personal dilemmas by not spending more time having fun. Instead, the mode of the day’s spreading yourself in every direction rather than taking a break for unstructured play.

Recently, my daily writing felt like a stale act of futility. I didn’t realize it at the time, but I’d forgotten how to have fun. I’d fallen into the habit of being overly responsible for the care of my aging mother, the care for my ailing dog, and looking after all the usual household and family duties I normally do on a daily basis. I found myself exhausted and overwhelmed and had little to no time remaining in my day to connect with my inspired side.

My writing was in last place and with all that I had on my plate, my creativity had fallen by the wayside.

Having fun is serious business, and is a necessary part of life if you want to be successful professionally. It starts with a willingness to change your attitude and create the space to have fun!

When you put fun in your calendar and make it a non-negotiable, you’ll reap the benefits of better writing.

Scheduling unstructured play usually includes the kind of play that has no specific learning objective. The goal’s to have FUN!

Unstructured play means taking time out to rejuvenate or regroup. Connecting to yourself by setting aside an hour to enjoy spaciousness is essential to preserve balance in your life. When you make spaciousness part of your day, you’ll continue to blossom in a positive way. The pleasure of experiencing a facial, a massage, or having a haircut, is an occasion for celebrating you and your importance. Spaciousness is a time for taking care of you!

My daughter was recently asked to be a bridesmaid in the wedding of her best friend. My husband and I were also invited to be part of this memorable day.  I remember thinking how much work it would be to drive seven hours to where the wedding would be held, even though my husband was doing all the driving.

Sometimes getting to the fun part of life requires work and full-pressed preparation before you can feel comfortable about letting go, changing gears, and enjoying a few pleasurable moments. I realized this as my mind flew in the direction of overanalyzing potential problems that could arise while I was away– taking on this “fun” event.

I was doing a darn good job of stirring up every excuse I could muster to talk myself out of the possibility of actually having fun!

My daily schedule was already packed with projects that had deadlines to complete. My concern for finishing these projects in a timely matter raised my guilt level of leaving them behind, if only for a few days.

In the end, I did go to the wedding and found the long drive there was worth every minute. Stopping to have fun again was just what I needed.

Upon my return to work I found myself refreshed. The break of cutting loose and celebrating life actually brought new creativity to my writing and a much brighter outlook.

Setting aside a short amount of time to do daily yoga or meditation can be just as effective as taking off for a few days to replenish. Remember to make time for fun. Put it in your calendar as a non-negotiable. The rewards you’ll reap in your writing will be many!

My invitation to you is to simply start by writing one paragraph about the way you can find fun in your life and the difference it makes for you.