I’m inviting you to make time in your week for play.  That may seem a slightly odd suggestion but don’t underestimate the value of play.

Animals learn to survive through play when they are in the wild.  We’ve all seen the great nature programs where young cubs play fight, learning crucial skills to enable them to protect themselves and their families in the future.

Children learn through play and get to explore and expand their imagination.  Play allows them to use their logic and creativity to test out ideas and build new understanding.  These skills will serve them well in later life.

When as adults we give ourselves the opportunity to play, we can feel so alive.  We allow ourselves to express our individuality and find a place where we can gain new insights and perspectives.

“Play is the highest form of research.”  Albert Einstein

Play is also a great antidote to feeling (or dûing) stressed and overwhelmed.  You know those times when things start to go wrong, and it starts a chain reaction…you spill your drink, you drop your phone, you can’t get on top of your to-do list, you’re late for an appointment… and so it continues.

Take some time out to play.  Although this may seem counter intuitive, play is a perfect way to get back to being present, which will enable you to gain clarity and perspective.

Many great ideas are born when we are at play.  How often do you hear people commenting that they were inspired while in the swimming pool, or walking the dog?

“Almost all creativity involves purposeful play.”  Abraham Maslow

We build our strongest relationships with friends and family by taking the time to play together.  Businesses are starting to recognise the importance of play in being successful.  The building of strong relationships, productivity and creativity has prompted some amazing work environments that actively promote play.

“You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.”  Plato

Play can take many forms from sports to art and crafts, from cooking to travelling, from drama to gardening.  The key is finding the things that light you up and make more time for those in your life.

What step can you take today to introduce more play into your life?