Sunday, August 6, 2017

How We Heal: Play, Laughter & Joy

My time on Twitter this summer has led me to some amazing individuals, groups and ideas. Growing Bolder is one such organization and this selection caused me to pause particularly. It quickly expresses my own ideas on life and the reasons why we should do certain things while leaving the specifics to our own discretion.

We can look at ourselves in 3 parts.

I find great connection and value with this notion that we are composed of a body, mind and spirit. I wrote about this in a piece titled Summer Soliloquy, in a March piece titled Boxes and back in 2016 in relation to a great organization called Playworks. It really helps me deal with what I sense as reality. I have a physical body, a mind inside of it and a connection with the outside (other people, our world and perhaps beyond that) that I define as this intangible thing called spirit.

We each have a unique relationship with our 3 parts.

I could have a great body but not consider things much and therefore get in trouble. I could have a great connection with others and serve them but be dealing with mental or physical pain. The health of our parts changes over time and as we grow. If we’re not open to growth, those relationships can become stuck. Also, outside forces affect our parts positively and negatively.

We can heal (and grow) our parts with certain things.

As this proverb describes, our parts can be nourished. If we look at the entire proverb’s action plan, I see an overriding theme: Play. Laughter. Joy. These 3 things are intimately connected.

Play, by definition, is something “fun”. Because it’s “fun”, it should fill us with joy and that joy will trigger a response: laughter.

You may want to argue that “play” is for children and wish to scoff at the whole notion. I’m going to argue that the intent of this proverb is more broad, even though I would also argue that we would all do well with a bit of real play with kids on a regular basis. Here’s the thing: we can all do something fun. Examples include golf, dance, lacrosse, swimming, running, gardening, carpentry...there are adults out there who think one or more of these things is enjoyable and doing them builds our bodies. Not convinced yet?

We add “spirit” and “mind” into the physical action to make it more fun.

We put our minds to it and come up with missions for the action. Learning a trade to expand our minds. Habitat for Humanity construction. Runs for cures. Volunteer garden work at city parks. Roadside cleanup events for community beautification. We make something fun by connecting the action with the other 2 parts of self.

Another big concept comes out when we think of it in these terms. It’s all leading to pulling together. As individuals, pulling our 3 parts together into action leads us to more success. When we then ALL pull together, we ALL become even MORE successful.

Layer upon layer, pulling together.

What do we have to lose? Let’s play. Let’s laugh. Let’s be filled with joy. Together.

Some folks are already heading back to school or will do so soon. There is still time to order yourself a copy of my guided journal, Dear Teachers from Amazon (Prime eligible!). In addition, I have signed copies available by contacting me at Of those, I am offering readers of my blog a CHANCE TO WIN one free copy for yourself AND one Dear Teacher whom you nominate by going to a Google form here.

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