MOMMY, MOMMY, WILL YOU PLAY WITH ME?

 

Hearing these words usually comes with a bit of biting my tongue. Even for me, the Mom who believes whole-heartedly IN the value of play. Even for me, the Mom who has built a career around designing Play things. Even for me, the Mom who believes that all human beings, including grownups, should invite PLAY into their lives more.

Hearing these words usually comes with a bit of biting my tongue. Even for me, the Mom who believes whole-heartedly IN the value of play. Even for me, the Mom who has built a career around designing Play things. Even for me, the Mom who believes that all human beings, including grownups, should invite PLAY into their lives more.

So why, then, when I hear “Will you PLAY with me?” do I have to bite my tongue? Why is my first (internal) reaction to cringe? Why does it take mindfulness and intention and a conscious choice to engage in such a basic human form of CONNECTION? That’s ultimately what it is.

A Bid for Connection.

A child asks us to play because their PLAY is the work of childhood. Because they are INVITING us into their WORLD. Asking these five simple words – to ME – is an honor.

It’s a way for them to reach out, pull me close, show love, and connect.

And yet, I don’t always interpret their words as an invitation to connect. I usually see it as a chore.

While I am sitting down to play my mind races to all the other things I should be doing….or could be doing. I have a hard time slowing down my thoughts, my stream of consciousness enough to BE PRESENT. I think I have to direct what this interaction needs to look like. Or model something exceptional. Or teach something amazing. And it feels like pressure…a burden…..when really,
PLAY is the JOY of childhood.

How do I turn off my to-do lists and tap into the peace inside my Soul that can nurture connection and the ability to Show Up Messy and PLAY?

 


 

PLAY WITH YOURSELF. Do something you LOVE. Not to “teach” your child. But so they can see you engaging in something that lights YOU up. Have you ever noticed that children are innately curious about what you’re doing in the kitchen? They want to help cut, dice, rearrange plates, set the table? Because they see us doing it ALL THE TIME. Remember to add PERSONAL PLAY TIME to your own SELF-CARE schedule. Let your children see you engaging in reading, writing, drawing, painting, playing music, sports……they will voluntarily test out new materials and experiences simply because they see your joy. You are teaching them that self-care is a valuable part of adulting.

 

Whether you are a child or a grownup, PLAY actually helps reduce stress hormones, giving us more energy and the opportunity to show up in presence and connection. Play is as good for your Soul as it is for your child’s Spirit. In addition to the developmental benefits for kids, play can reawaken and relax parts of your brain that help you live more in the moment, creating the opportunity for connection through presence.

 

I believe grownups need to add play into their daily lives just as much as children need to live in play. When they are deeply lost in their imaginative worlds, anything is possible. Children have a unique way of seeing the world. Possibilities are endless. Literally. They don’t have the past experiences of failure to block their open-minded problem- solving capacity. They string together ideas and concepts in a way that is no-pressure. Where they are just toying with, manipulating, and experimenting. With words. Thoughts. Ideas. Concepts. Physics. Art. Language. Culture. Pretend.

 

Can you imagine a grown up world with so little judgment and so filled with possibilities?

Sign up to access my FREE resource: How to Play (with your kids) The PlayFULL Way

  • This TIP + 11 More provenreminders of How to Play (with your kids) in PRINTABLE form. These are the reminders I use to cultivate a PlayFULL connection with each of my children.
  • A handy, one-page printable you can hang on your refrigerator to refrigerator, mirror, or front door and get a visual reminder of ways to increase connection and love at home.
  • These reminders have transformed our connection at home into the mindful, intentional, and PlayFULL culture that I truly wished to cultivate and I know they will inspire your family’s connection too!

Sign Up Here

 

 

 

 

Here:

 

and Here: