One of the questions that I routinely ask new therapy patients is, “What do you do for fun?”
Some are able to answer in a positive manner without hesitation. Others, however, treat it like a trick question – and an uncomfortable trick question at that.
I get all kinds of uncomfortable responses from various patients: hemming and hawing; silence while they try to think of an answer; and some frank admissions from those who don’t have an answer.
Those responses tell me that there are a number of people out there who have gotten so caught up in their real or perceived obligations that they don’t know how to have fun.
People don’t start out that way. Unless they are being severely deprived or abused, children know how to have fun. Play is as essential to normal development as is nutrition, sleep, learning, socializing, and shelter. As we grow older, however, some of us learn that we can neglect its importance because – unlike food or sleep – we can survive without it.
But without fun, our quality of life suffers, and so does our emotional balance and a major element of our humanness.
Take an inventory of yourself. What do you do for fun? If you can’t answer the question, build yourself an answer by building some fun activities into your life.
There is no universal requirement of what you need to do to have fun. It needs to be personal or else it wouldn’t be fun. You may be surprised to learn how easy it is to adjust to having some fun in your life. You will also find that it is quite rewarding and reinforcing – because having fun is fun.