“Nothing is more important than reconnecting with your bliss. Nothing is as rich. Nothing is more real.” – Deepak Chopra
“Your soul is infinitely creative. It is alive and expansive in nature. It is curious and playful, changing with the tides of time.” – Debbie Ford
Make sure you weave fun and frolic into each day;
Laughter and light;
Joy hunting and capturing;
Simple things right in front of you;
Flex your imagination;
Strengthen your smile muscles;
Find your bliss.
“It is through gratitude for the present moment that the spiritual dimension of life opens up.” – Eckhart Tolle
“Life is a song – sing it. Life is a game – play it. Life is a challenge – meet it. Life is a dream – realize it. Life is a sacrifice – offer it. Life is love – enjoy it.” – Sai Baba
Are you spectating or participating in your life? Stuck looking backward or engaged in doing and planning what lies ahead? In problems or possibilities? In optimism or pessimism? Choose well and daily for it determines the quality and outcomes of your life.
Stay in your game and get on the field. Play. Have fun. Give your best in the moment, keep growing, improving and expanding. Ignore the critic who’s an expert at spectating, never playing. It’s not in error and shortcoming that we suffer defeat, it is in not ever trying or ever getting on the field. Dare greatly.
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” – Theodore Roosevelt
Guard your joy, embrace optimism, participate imperfectly.
“Your daily life is your temple and your religion. When you enter into it take with you your all.” – Khalil Gibran
“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” – Rumi
A walk with friends, two playgrounds, one dog park, the first lawn cutting of the season and a big bouncy ball kind of day. No schedule, nowhere to be but in the present, exploring, climbing, balancing, sliding, swinging and playing. When we let go of the should, must, have to, checklist busy days and enter the play zone, the world widens, deepens and gratitude appears in simple moments.
“Never, ever underestimate the importance of having fun.” – Randy Pausch
Foster playful moments daily to awaken to the present, ease into flow and enjoy the journey.
“With mindfulness, you can establish yourself in the present in order to touch the wonders of life that are available in that moment.” – Thich Nhat Hanh
“Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony.” – Thomas Merton
“Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.” – Khalil Gibran
“Time is the coin of your life. It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent. Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you.” – Carl Sandburg
With workdays filled with back to back meetings, an unstructured day is a gift. I’ve been weaving a day off here and there to open space. Yesterday, after a slow start, I took the girls to the dog park, unhurried, no rushing, no watch watching, no place to be, nothing to do. Sauntering, wandering and throwing one ball after the next. With a string of sunny warm days, the snow is almost gone, soft fresh mud taking its place. As we wandered down the path along the field, Sasha and Abby jumped over dead trees, ducked under branches and explored with great abandon.
As we were walking back for some more ball throwing, the girls decided to dive into the swamp where ice was last week. They could not have been more pleased with their decision. While I wasn’t too delighted, I decided to respond with laughter rather than angst. It was fun to witness their joy. As Sasha worked her way out of the water, she emerged looking like a skunk. The walk turned out to be a good bad decision because I chose to to go with the good rather than the bad. A choice each of us has every day.
The next stop was the self-serve dog wash. While the dirt washed out, the fun remained fully intact. We jam our days with meetings, activities and busywork with little room for good “bad” decisions of frolic, play and exploration.
Make room each day for silly, goofy and even a little mud. Make a cannon ball into the deep end of the pool of delight and splash some joy on others. It is not only good for the soul, it is required.
“We are never more fully alive, more completely ourselves, or more deeply engrossed in anything than when we are playing.” -Charles Schaefer
“The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect but by the play instinct acting from inner necessity. The creative mind plays with the objects it loves.” – Carl Jung
“The debt we owe to the play of imagination is incalculable.” – Carl Jung
Every time I let others get to me, not in a good way. Every time, I get off the positivity path and wander into a cloud of negativity. Every time, I choose dark over light. I soon wake up and rediscover blessings and gifts that are already present and available when I look with new eyes. My wake up call comes in a text from a friend, a dog with a toy, the brilliance of a flower or a child in their natural state before we make them “grow up.”
We must never surrender our power and responsibility to be joyful, playful, grateful and in awe. Especially right now when the world is upside down.
Don’t let others get you down. Do your part to lift up, look up and never, ever give up. I am deeply grateful for my tribe who inspire, listen and love unconditionally, moving me rapidly through moments of scarcity and comparison into abundance and purpose. Get out and play and invite others to join you.
“The mind cannot long play the heart’s role.” – Francois de La Rochefoucauld
“Think left and think right and think low and think high. Oh, the thinks you can think up if only you try!” – Dr. Seuss
“Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.” – Albert Einstein
There are many quotes from my day with Liam today. My favorite one is “You have to use your imagination.” Well isn’t that an underused muscle. My worry, complaint, uncertainty, judgment, work too much, multitasking and consternation muscles are very strong. They get a lot of use, overuse actually.
This weekend, I am going to “imagination bootcamp” with my camp counselor Liam and his capable assistants Abby and Sasha. Two trips to the playground, a pizza party and three ball throwing practices later, it is a good start to bootcamp. What’s next? Toy Story 2 snuggling next to my best pal of course. Tomorrow – Como, swimming, tennis ball hitting and some Disney movies later, there should be many lessons to be learned.
This is a no work, no worry weekend. Let the games begin. Imagination, look out, we’re coming for you!
“Imagination is the eye of the soul.” – Joseph Joubert