I have been exploring the topic of play and its role in our lives. Our dog Gunner is ready to play whenever! As a kid I played everyday, it seemed so natural and I did it just for fun. Why and when did that change as I grew up? Up until the past few of my adult years, I have played to win. Be it as a golfer, a soccer player and coach, as a fan, as a manager and also as a parent. Of late, I play golf simply to have fun, and you know what, I have a lot more fun than when I was grinding out round after round and I think I’m scoring better, imagine that!
Thinking about this more, I recognize I have watched my two sons soccer games not from the perspective of play but from one of competition and wanting to see them win. I think I may have missed the point, aren’t they are winning if they are playing?
I had a conversation with my good friend Mark Sakamoto the other day. He is the store manager of one of the large Trader Joe’s stores. His team has to get ready to open the store each day and when they get done early they play. Someone invents a game and they have a good time. What a great way to start the day and I bet the customers get service with a smile following.
For me I think it is time to lighten up a bit; at work, at home and at play. 🙂
Here are a few pictures that come to mind when I think of really playing including me wearing my first ever Bristol City football kit (soccer uniform to translate into American). Boy that was a special day for me!
Check out the difference in these two cyclists demeanor, who is having more fun in the mud?
Aren’t we a serious, competitive bunch. i think it relates to your posts on being good enough. The not good enough self has to compensate for all those doubting, and self-negating thoughts and feelings. Winning becomes essential. I try to say to my boys before every game, “go have some fun out there.” That doesn’t mean I’m not guilty of trying too hard to get a point across about how to “play” better. When I was writing my book the most exhilarating, joyful moments came when I was sailing along, playing with words and images. It felt like I was rolling dice and having a kick watching to see how they tumbled and landed. Thanks for another thoughtful blog, Andy. Have fun, Phil
Phil, that is a great observation, I hadn’t thought about it but there is a strong connection to our sense of being enough.