The Power of Play
Two years ago this coming April, I conducted a free workshop. At the time, the purpose of the workshop was simply to share some ideas on creativity that I thought might be helpful to a few friends.. There was not a great deal of forethought to this adventure but there was an overwhelming urgency.
The outcome, to say the least, was spectacular and it changed my life forever.
No, that is not stretching the fact. In that workshop I discovered the awesome power of creativity and the power of play in transforming the lives of adults.
It was then, thoughI didn’t know it, that I became the Power Play Lady of the Power Play Reconnect Blueprint.
So, what is this entity The Power Play Reconnect Blueprint? Very simply it is a platform and workshop to encourage people to rediscover their authentic, original and creative self through the power of play.
Now, that sounds fairly simple and straightforward. Grab some crayons, watercolors or clay and get busy.
Play is more, so much more than that!
Play can be gloriously fun but it can also be profoundly serious.
Play has the power to release a place in ourselves and at the same time return us to ourselves, to our unique being, in a way that is awe inspiring. Most of us disconnected from ourselves early in childhood and we never returned to that special place.
Today, because of this disconnect, I offer a specific talk on the Power of Play titled Critical Heart Centered Play for Grownups. It’s a talk that I provide as a community service and it is based on what I learned from the workshop that I created two years ago. In this talk I use a formula for reconnecting which I call P.A.S.S.A.G.E. Play is the first segment of this formula.
Kathryn Hirsch-Pasek, renowned psychologist noted that when grown-ups abandon play, we abandon a vital part of ourselves. Author, Stuart Brown MD of the book Play and founder of the National Institute of Play has study the power of play in prisoners, business people, actors, artist and more. A most notable study of Dr.Brown is that of predicting criminal behavior among murderers who did not have a childhood play history. World famous physician Patch Adams understands very well the critical importance of play and its beneficial attributes.
Moving forward with those thoughts, is it possible that one of the reasons we are seeing such an increase in divorce, domestic violence, criminal violent behavior, depression and rampant chronic dis-ease is because there is not enough real play?. Is it possible that we have become technologically astute and 'life' ignorant?
To be play, play must be needless, spontaneous activity that has as its own reward refreshment, joy and undiluted pleasure.
What does this look like?
Take a moment to watch small children at play. They play not only with their physical bodies but with everything they are. They are “all in” and you know it by seeing the looks on their faces. In those moments, their entire being appears to be infused and wrapped in pure joy and pleasure.
Would it amaze you to know that this same joyful expression is not to be limited to childhood? It doesn’t mean that we as adults act ‘childish’ but as someone reminded us it is good, even necessary that we never forget what it is to be childlike.
So, Consider This: when was the last time you played full out? Do you have a play history of wholesome, joyful and creative activity? Take a moment to write down the last five times that you have engaged in serious play – a snowball fight – baking cookies with your children or grandchildren, a walk in the park when you played on the swings and remembered that feeling of exaltation powered by that self-propelled flying high feeling.
…And if you can’t remember, maybe it’s time to make a date for FUN to rediscover the power of play for your life..
P.S. IF YOU AND A FEW FRIENDS OR NEIGHBORS WOULD LIKE TO HEAR THE ENCOURAGING TALK MENTIONED EARLIER (IT’S A FREEBIE) Please call, text or email me.
What is your original and authentic blueprint?
When I was nine years old, I sat in a movie theater at the RKO Keith in White Plains, New York. The day seemed to have been a normal Saturday. We were never allowed to sleep late not even in the summer. Up at six and chores finished by eleven. Then if we passed my mother's white glove test, the reward was movie and bus fare and money for popcorn. Pure joy.
This Saturday proved to be the one that I have remembered all of my life.
Back in the day, Saturday matinee's belonged to the children. Theater was cloaked in glorious mystery. The heavy velvet curtains hid the screen while a softly playing organist hid behind the curtains at the far right of the stage. Children giggled, chatted and taunted and yes tossed a few kernals of popcorn but when those velvet curtains rose in the organist corner and the organ with its muscian slid from its hidden place .. all mayhem stopped.
We were mesmerized. Then we waited with baited breath because as happy as we were to see the organist it was really just the prelude to the main event; twenty minutes of cartoons. Then on to the movie.
When your a child every thing appears to be larger than life. For me, it felt as if the characters in the movie had come off the screen.
The movie was Disney's "A Light in the Forest." There was a moment when the main character, a Native American, overwhelmed the screen. It was to me, at nine years old, the most awesome shot! I was emotionally engaged and I remember jumping forward in my seat and whether I said it aloud or to myself, I don't know. But I remember saying with absolute conviction:
"I can do that!"
The "that" was the possibility of writing stories that translated into powerful images on film.
I am blessed that in my life I worked for television and had the opportunity to realize that indeed, I could do "that"
I am writing this because I was not the exception. Most children know exactly who they are and who they are meant to be from very early on.
I proved this to myself when I had the opportunity to work at the Baltimore Convention Center for the Palm Springs Fine Arts and Antique Show during the summer of 2017. I spent my breaks and lunch time (I was assisting one of the vendors) walking and speaking to the vendors of some of the most exquisite and amazing works. My question to each one was "When did you know that this is what you wanted to do with your life/" The answer came back again and again: "five years old, seven years old. From the first time I saw my grandmothers collection of cobalt blue glass and she allowed me to help her dust it.
These artisans are amazing in what they produce. Aside from the importance of age, the overriding theme is that they refused to let anyone, not even parents to dissuade them from the intrinsic knowledge of who they were.
That's why I asked the title question. What is your blueprint? What is it that you knew about yourself from a very early age that maybe you have forgotten or you were dissuaded from pursuing.
It happened to me. I don't doubt that it has happened to many others.
I'd love to have your feedback - hear your story. You can reach me at email@example.com or text me at 443-620-4115
In the meantime Consider This:
You get to a place where you begin to be guided by something greater than yourself. You stop fighting and striving and instead, surrender to your higher purpose and be guided from there, allowing things to happen, trusting in Source, focusing on your why and letting go of the how." Dr. Wayne W. Dyer "The Shift: Taking Your Life from Ambition to Meaning.
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