The Benefits of Play

Playing is not just an escape from reality. Instead, taking time out to engage in activities you enjoy, from hobbies to sports, is very beneficial to your body and mind. Health professionals agree that taking time for play is healthy and helps people live more fully. Beyond mere leisure, play serves as a catalyst for mental, physical, and emotional rejuvenation. From stress reduction to improved creativity, the benefits of play are vast. Here are a few science-backed reasons why embracing play isn’t just a nostalgic indulgence but a key to unlocking a more vibrant and fulfilling adulthood. It’s time to rediscover the joy and vitality that play brings into our lives.

Enhance your life with these benefits of play:

  1. Stress reduction. Enjoying playful activities releases endorphins. Endorphins help relieve muscular pains and promote a sense of well-being. You’ll feel more motivated to be active and take on more challenges.
  2. Better brain function. Many forms of play require thought and strategy. From jigsaw puzzles and card games to team-oriented escape rooms, you can have fun while growing your brain’s ability to think sharply. Fun and challenging activities also boost creativity, innovative thoughts, and critical thinking.
  3. It gets you moving. Sir Isaac Newton said, “A body in motion stays in motion; a body at rest stays at rest.” Getting active with hiking, swimming, pickleball, bowling, running, and other physical activities results in other benefits to your body, like increased motivation and drive, higher collaboration, better teamwork, and greater overall productivity. People who regularly engage in play feel more youthful and have greater energy.
  4. Better relationships. Having a good time together and sharing laughter increases our mental capacity for empathy, compassion, trust, and intimacy. Humans are often attracted to others who take stressful situations in stride and alleviate stress with good-natured humor. Playing is usually how our brains create those skills.

How to add more playfulness to your life:

At home, numerous avenues exist to infuse play into daily routines. Here are just a few examples, but the key is to discover recreational activities you enjoy and do them.

  • Schedule regular team-building activities at work led by professional facilitators.
  • Encourage yourself and others to take at least 20 minutes in the morning and 20 minutes in the afternoon to get away from your desk and engage in activities like walking, ping-pong, checkers, etc.
  • Plan a special activity for yourself at least once a month, like hiking a new trail, trying a new activity, visiting a state park, participating in a 10K run, etc.
  • Schedule hobbies on your calendar. Prioritize doing fun things you love, whether working in your garden or reading a good book. Better yet–find a local club or association to meet other people with similar interests.
  • Don’t regard things you might enjoy as childish. Think a Lego Millennium Falcon set would be fun to build? Do it! Curious about the trampoline park? Give it a try! Have you always wanted to try a pottery wheel? Sign up for a class.
  • Keep a journal. Record everything you’ve done to add more fun, and play with observations about how those activities make you feel. Noting the improvements in your overall well-being will motivate you to keep focusing on play.

Come Play with Us at Earth and Soul Adventures

Are you ready for a transformative travel experience that will change your outlook on life forever? Join us for any of our retreats featuring awe-inspiring locations around the world. You’ll be joined by a handful of peers to embark on an adventure that will push you out of your comfort zone as you explore your full potential. Experience the benefits of play first-hand and observe the positive changes playfulness makes to your body, mind, and soul. Contact Earth and Soul Adventures today to learn more about our facilitated travel retreats and coaching programs designed to help you live a full, purpose-driven life.

Leave a Comment