Why Grownups Should Be Playful Too

The Science of Happiness

Feb 29 2024 • 19 mins

Playfulness can improve your relationships, help you excel at work, and reduce stress. We explore a strategy shown to help you become more playful.

Link to episode transcript: http://tinyurl.com/b5xc78r3

Episode summary:

Patricia Mebrahtu used to have so much fun as a child. Now, as a medical assistant and mother of two young children, she found herself feeling burnt out and irritable. For our show, Patricia tried a practice to infuse more playfulness into her life. From singing karaoke with her family to playing in the rain, she tapped into her inner child. Through this practice, Patricia recognized the importance of taking time out for yourself, and that she can carve out opportunities to have fun and be playful, even as a busy adult. Later, we hear from psychologist René Proyer about the different types of playfulness, and how incorporating play can benefit our sense of wellbeing.


Practice:

  1. Each day for a week, incorporate one playful activity into your routine – it can be anything you find enjoyable and playful.

  2. Every evening, write about the experience, and how it made you feel in the present moment.

Today’s guests:

Patricia Mebrahtu is a mother and medical assistant in California.

René Proyer is a psychologist from the Martin-Luther University Halle-Wittenberg.

Learn about René’s work: http://tinyurl.com/4sa9vye9

Follow René on Twitter: http://tinyurl.com/3x5986u6

Resources from The Greater Good Science Center:

Can We Play? http://tinyurl.com/prhv22rf

What Playfulness Can Do for Your Relationship: http://tinyurl.com/n9b3h7e4

Tuesday Tip: Play with Some Friends: http://tinyurl.com/mu837nwr

More Resources on Being Playful:

BBC - Playtime: Is it time we took 'play' more seriously? http://tinyurl.com/4jmx89vn

NYT - Why We All Need to Have More Fun: http://tinyurl.com/335z4bdu

Washington Post - Why it’s good for grown-ups to go play: http://tinyurl.com/5w8shen

TED - The Importance of PLAY in adulthood and childhood: http://tinyurl.com/4hsn9um4

How do you incorporate play into your life? Email us at happinesspod@berkeley.edu or use the hashtag #happinesspod.

Help us share The Science of Happiness!

Rate us on Spotify and share this link with someone who might like the show: http://tinyurl.com/up29j8zk

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