Una's Blog


Una’s little world 38. PLAYTIME!


by Una Hearne.

So my latest craft supplies arrived and I decided to experiment with my new invisible thread (it’s like a fine fishing line). I went to thread the needle and discovered the problem with invisible thread… πŸ™‚

Playtime is not just for children. As adults we think we must give up childish things when we take on the responsibilities of life. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Playtime is time spent doing something you enjoy and is not work to you. Sometimes we do have it in our lives – we just don’t call it play. Sports, running and walking are all playtime. But we call them ‘healthy activities’ – nothing frivolous about that! And for those who don’t enjoy them but do it anyway – well that’s just suffering. Music, literature and theatre also count as play and we indulge in those under the heading ‘culture’. The image of crafts often suffers from disdain and it seems mostly women have the courage to do those. As for art, well, if we can’t produce something professional we seem to think we shouldn’t do it at all. This is just wrong!

All playtime pursuits belong to all of us! If you enjoy splashing about with paints, drawing terrible pictures or gluing sequins on everything – what on earth does it matter what anyone else thinks? Don’t do it to be judged, do it for the craic! You don’t even have to share your creations. It’s like me singing in the car – I was asked not to sing in the choir in school πŸ™‚ – but I can still sing raucously in the car without offending anyone’s sensibilities.

If you can’t do it just for the thrills and giggles here are some other reasons to get into something fun…

Research shows that having hobbies – playtime – taking proper head breaks from work and doing something fun makes our brains function better. Our intelligence, creativity and problem solving, all increase. Hobbies also have major health benefits. We know the benefits of exercise, but do you realise that all types of playtime calm the nervous system and clear the mind? Play can be a form of meditation and mindfulness – the antidote to stress. Medical professionals know this. Art and crafts, literature and music are all used therapeutically for a wide variety of illness and conditions.

All very noble and excellent reasons to play. But the best reason to give yourself playtime is to have FUN. There simply isn’t enough fun being had in the world today. It is desperately needed. You can do your bit to help the world rebalance by having more fun. This is a call to arms people, pick up your weapon of choice – bongos, brushes, pen and paper, hula hoop or needles, and go PLAY! You can be the change.

And remember, there is simply nothing that cannot be improved with the addition of googly eyes. πŸ™‚

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