Remember play (it’s productive)

Someone said to me recently:

Friend: “What if life wasn’t about how much I get done in a day, but whether or not I felt good during the day?”

Oh.

Me: “So you mean, I wouldn’t attach my self-worth to my to-do list anymore, and instead focus on doing the things that made me feel good? Or finding ways to feel good as I do the work?”

Hmmmm.

This little thought trickled into the way I went about the next few days. Nothing became perfect overnight, I still felt behind on a lot of things and didn’t know how to be unproductive.

I explained my inability to just enjoy myself and play to my mastermind ladies. And then Kate said something rather significant: “What if you stopped calling it unproductive? What if you believed that taking time to play actually helped you show up and do the work? What if you didn’t call it unproductive time, but breathing time?”

Yes, yes, yes.

A few hours later I was comfortably sitting on a cushion, with some warm tea in my hands and my Journal open & ready for a coaching session with the lovely Ev’Yan. As the conversation progressed, I told her about my frustrations balancing work and play. Her response was simple but profound:

“What if play fueled your work? What if taking care of yourself was the best thing you could do for your business?” She challenged me to think about my ideal workday, without any constrictions around whether or not I could turn that into a reality.

I realized this: I only want to work half days. I want time for exploration, growth, and play. And what does play look like? That was the part I was most afraid of because I thought I wouldn’t be able to come up with anything that truly struck a chord with me. But my creativity was startled and ready to burst out with what had been brewing up inside me since those lie-in-bed-and-be-with-yourself days.

Here’s an excerpt from my diary:

Play

  • I create jewelry that feels wild + feminine. Feathers + metals + stones.
  • I take time to try out new almost-too-luxurious-to-even-try recipes, not just everyday ones. I make pralinés and decorate them with the gold dust and eatable decoration that I could never allow myself to buy.
  • I make my home feel cozy. I spend time and money carefully turning it into a place that feels like an expression of who I am.

Wow.

If you consider that before, play to me meant reading a book about finances, that is pretty wild.

And oh so feminine. I didn’t even know I craved all these creative outlets, and that I had a nag for the cliche feminine hobbies. Fun.

So now I’ll be digging out my DIY box with the metal beads and make myself one of these gorgeous bracelets that I gave out for Christmas last year (of course I didn’t make one for myself).

How can you start playing a little more? What did you use to do for fun that feels too unproductive today?

Iris

Author: Iris

Iris' coaching helps women simplify their daily lives so feel focused and at ease. Her work is inspired by minimalism, habit work, and the psychological knowledge she gained during her BA in Psychology. Her laser-sharp listening skills coupled with her warmth make sure you feel seen as you decipher overwhelm and turn it into clarity. Clients report her sessions leave them feeling inspired, appreciated and "realistically invincible".