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Learning to play again by Anurag Sharma

By Volunteer Anurag Sharma, FHI Guwahati

In our hectic, modern lives, many of us focus so heavily on work and family commitments that we never seem to have time for pure fun.

Somewhere between childhood and adulthood, we stopped playing. When we carve out some leisure time, we’re more likely to zone out than engage in rejuvenating fun and games like we did as children. But playing just for the sake of unabashed joy and fun is not just essential for kids; it can be an important source of relaxation and stimulation for adults as well.

Playfulness is the value that I try to inculcate from children because playing, as an activity, serves many valuable purposes. It is a means by which children develop their physical, intellectual, emotional, social, and moral capacities. It is a means of creating and preserving friendships. It also provides a state of mind that, in adults as well as children, is uniquely suited for high-level reasoning, insightful problem solving and all sorts of creative endeavours.

In adults, playing is commonly blended with other motives, having to do with adult responsibilities. That is why, in everyday conversation, we tend to talk about children “playing” and about adults bringing a “playful attitude” or “playful spirit” to their activities. We intuitively think of playfulness as a matter of degree.

After meeting the wonderful kids during the past events of FHI, I can assure that children can be a great source of motivation to inculcate new values in adults. They teach us to let go of our tensed, worried selves while giving into the fun of childlike innocence. They give back to us the joys of playing without ulterior motives.

So, as a volunteer, this is what I shall strive to learn; playing like a kid again.

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