The science behind having fun
"Enjoy life. there is plenty of time to be dead."
It can be easy to get sucked into the chaos of everyday life when we are focused on our commitments and obligations. Tending to our families, ourselves and our careers can sometimes seem like all work and no play. While it is important to address our needs and those of our loved ones, taking time to enjoy life should be a priority for everyone from a simple self-care perspective. There are plenty of health benefits to incorporating fun into our daily lives. Your doctor may not prescribe fun, but it can do wonders for our sense of wellbeing.
Something as simple as playing games or partaking in recreational activities can help reduce stress, boost our energy and even help us sleep better. Having fun can help improve our relationships and even increase our cognitive abilities, including our memory capacity. All of these amazing benefits are available to us simply by spending more time acting like a kid again. What a concept! Think back to what it was like to be a carefree kid, where one of our biggest concerns was making sure we were home in time for dinner.
Depriving ourselves opportunities to have some fun and enjoyment on a regular basis can actually contribute to increased stress and depressive symptoms. It makes sense if we think about it in terms of balance. Most of us have probably heard the expression, "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy." The science tells us it can also make him sad and anxious too. Nobody wants that. Let's avoid being like Jack.
So, what is it you do for fun and enjoyment? We all have our preferred activities and outlets. How often do you get to put the commitments aside to simply enjoy life? You may tell yourself and others you don't have the time. Now that you have been reminded how important it is to our self-care and wellbeing, hopefully you can make fun more of a priority in your life. Even when our lives feel super busy, we may have to schedule the time, knowing it's good for us! No guilt. No remorse. We need fun and play time to counter the non-fun stuff. Ok, now go have/plan some fun! 😃
Anitmaximalist: 9 Scientific Benefits of Having Fun
HelpGuide: The Benefits of Play for Adults
Very Well Mind: Why Having Fun Provides Some of the Best Stress Relief