SERIOUS PLAY: The value of play in a not terribly playful world

As children most of us have experienced the sheer joy of bouncing on a jumping castle, or the tactile pleasure of finger painting!

 

Simply losing ourselves in the moment, with no purpose other than to have fun and play with friends.

 

The challenge as adults? How many of us regularly experience anything like this now -especially during these current times of burnout, boreout and stress?

 

Researchers at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health (HSPH) believe we need to find a way to step away from the worries that preoccupy us as adults. According to Dr Laura Kubzansky, co-director of the Center for Health and Happiness at HSPH “Everyone needs to find a way to be in the moment, to find a restorative state that allows them to put down their burdens.”

 

At Phuel we have long recognised the value of fun in supporting learning but struggled with the notion of fun for fun’s sake in the work we do for our clients…until Covid.

 

Not for the first time in our partnership, Troy Hoggan at Visy laid down a challenge to our team (Jake, Nathy and Amanda in particular!): Create an experience for us where the entire team can just have fun, connect and network with new (and old!) colleagues and step away from their day to day commitments for a couple of hours.

 

And so was born “Spy Craft”! Our newest team experienced focused purely on the notion of fun and connection. And let’s face it, who doesn’t love to imagine themselves a character in a Bond movie!?!Play is about fun, flow, freedom and active engagement. When we get these things right we can temporarily lose ourselves, experience diminished self-consciousness and freedom from time -restore and replenish.