Friday, September 6, 2013

The Importance of Play

Children play.  Hopefully as a child you GOT to play a lot because playing helped you develop your imagination, social skills, brain development and emotional intelligence. If you did not get to play you may very well be reading this in a penitentiary somewhere. 

What is good for children and animals (yes animals play) is also good for adults.  We reach a certain age we start quoting 1 Corinthians 13:11 like Tammy Faye Bakker.  Yes, we can put away childish things and be adults but that doesn’t mean we should STOP playing!  Playing increases our joy hormone Norepinephrine, strengthens our problem solving skills, promotes creativity, helps us build relationships and of course it is FUN!
So why play?  Defining play is a tricky business because it is not a thing but rather a process.  A process that is fun, joyful and pleasurable.  So, for grandma knitting might push her play button but for me knitting would be torture.  Play is as individual as we are.  You know it when you are in it.
The opposite of play is not work or being serious.  The opposite of play is joyless.  Yep, you lose your mojo joy ball.  As a life and creativity coach I help my clients find their joy and I do it through Creative Play.
Now, for some this is a hard concept to grasp so I am going to break it down.  My Creative Play coaching model is influenced by Kaizen-Muse, Barbara Shea, Martha Beck, SARK and Dr. Stuart Brown.  My multi-colored tool box includes color exercises, music, aromatherapy, basic nutrition, body movement, guided imagery, laughter, education, awareness and energy.
Creative Play coaching sessions are designed for the client’s individual needs.  So a session might include talking, music, a color worksheet, a puppet show and a credit report.  It depends on what the client wants and needs.  Just because the session is playful doesn’t mean that it’s not serious business.  The purpose of the coaching session is to put the client into motion so they can find their joy and reach their goals.