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Why is Time for Play Important in Your Relationship?

Recently, Phil had been beating himself up for not accomplishing tasks; of wasting his time reading, relaxing, taking time out. True, it is important to watch for procrastination and all its little tricks that take us away from our important goals and accomplishments.

Yet we also need to show respect for our bodies and our minds. They need time off, time out, or time in other pursuits.

Individually and in our relationships we all need play time where we are not working on anything; not on progressing, not on taking care of business, and definitely not on achieving anything.

We recently had a marvelous and rejuvenating few days. These were days where we stepped outside our usual patterns and day to day projects and were just together having an intimate and lovely time. We didn’t do anything big and important. We were very present with each other talking, laughing, sharing. We are not referring to date nights, trips, or other planned escapades together. Here we are referring to spontaneous, unplanned, unscheduled, open free time.

It started when Maude suggested hanging out with each other with no goal other than that. We had each been so busy with our individual jobs and tasks or with mutual social events, that we hadn’t spent much time with each other just relaxing or having adventures. Those things that we enjoy doing separately can make us forget to spend time together, but time like that is important precisely because it doesn’t involve doing anything. It’s an opportunity to reconnect to ourselves and each other.

It is a time for laughter, for creativity, for spontaneity, for unplanned nonsense– the substance of life. In “The Artist’s Way,” author Julia Cameron offers a wonderful course for connecting with your creative self. One of the vital components of this process is what she calls “The Artist Date”. It is essentially “…an excursion, a play date…” And she suggests that “A little fun can go a long way toward making your work feel more like play.”

We all need these times and our relationships need them as well. Refresh yourselves and your partners, and all that you want to accomplish and create will be that much richer for it. Changing our patterns and altering the way we fill our time wakes us up and keeps us from sleepwalking through our lives and our loves. All our efforts will be that much more when we replenish our spirits with play and laughter!

Please leave comments about this post on our blog. You can also listen to Phil reading it here.

Successful Relationship Reading Corner

BookshelfIn this week's blog, we asked why time for play is important in your relationship. These articles remind us of why it is so important.

The Benefits of Play for Adults "In our hectic, modern lives, many of us focus so heavily on work and family commitments that we never seem to have time for pure fun. Somewhere between childhood and adulthood, we’ve stopped playing. When we carve out some leisure time, we're more likely to zone out in front of the TV or computer than engage in fun, rejuvenating play like we did as children. But just because we’re adults, that doesn't mean we have to take ourselves so seriously and make life all about work. We all need to play."

Adults need recess too. Here's why you should make time to play. "When you think of playing, some memories from childhood most likely come to mind: digging for dinosaur bones in the sandbox, a game of tag at recess, spending hours with your toy of choice (whether it was a Barbie doll, a Hot Wheel’s car or a pile of Legos). But can you remember the last time you played? If you can’t, then you may be missing out on an important way to give your physical and mental health a boost."

Choose a Partner You Can Be Playful With "As we grow older, more often than not, we are encouraged to subdue playful tendencies and to replace them with a more serious and professional air, as we strive to have it all figured out. We are discouraged from climbing trees, swinging on monkey bars, building sand castles, messily finger painting nonsensical artwork, or dancing freely when the music moves us. Our culture conditions us that publicly pursuing childlike activities may run the risk of appearing foolish or unprofessional. We are taught that you only dance when it is appropriate, like during dance classes, in a club, or at a wedding."

Spreading peace one relationship at a time
Phil and Maude
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