Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Why the Pumpkin Patch Face-Off was Motivational

I promised I would give you motivation and chocolate, and you may be thinking that all I've delivered in the last two blog entries was chocolate carnage. But there is a method to my madness. Hopefully you laughed at some point or maybe at least cracked a smile. I can promise you I was laughing. And that is the point.

I have come to the scary realization that adults have no idea how to have fun any more. I'm not kidding. I gave my "Motivation by Chocolate" seminar last week, and as one of the exercises asked my attendees to write down several (I gave them 10 blanks, how optimistic of me) things they like to do for fun. I fully expected them to start writing. They all sat looking at me as if I had asked them to jot down the Pythagorean Theorem. In fact, they would have probably preferred that.

I even tried to start their engines, gave them my ten ideas for fun. Not a lot of movement. Maybe some uncomfortable shifting in their seats. What I discovered was that they couldn't give themselves permission to have fun.

Let's face it - there is a world economic crisis, an important election, a war on, the planet is dying!! Have fun? How selfish. Shouldn't we be digging out a landfill somewhere? Who can think of fun??

Here's my response - it better be you and it better be now.

Do what you can about the above and let them go. I plan to vote (if campaigning for your candidate is fun - rock on, add it to the list and do it!), but I don't like politics. I'm voting and letting the outcome go. I always manage my finances wisely, I will continue to do that and I'll let it go. My worrying isn't going do a damn thing for Wall Street. As far as the war goes, I'll send my care packages, hope for the safety of our troops, thank every service member I see, and let it go. As far as the planet, I'll recycle what I can, use water more wisely, but I'm not lying awake at night. Do what you can and let it go. Could I do more? Sure. But going down that road is what's stressing everyone out. We can always do more, work more. It's why a group of adults has no idea how to have fun anymore. They have the entire weight of the world on their shoulders. They've taken on responsibility for the entire planet!! Well, Atlas, it's time to shrug.

Do what you can and then have some fun! Pushing yourself harder and worrying yourself sick won't improve the quality of your life. But easing up a little, building in some fun, will.

What do you think is fun? Here are my ten - you better come up with your own ten. NOW! What? Are you going to wait until you're dead to have fun? Seriously, if you wait until the economy is perfect, there's world peace, and the government gets its act together, you'll be long dead before you have a bit of fun. Stop waiting and start living.

1. candy - I think eating, finding and blogging about candy is fun. How fun is this?

2. reading - I love to read, especially mysteries. I download books on my IPod and listen as I do the third thing.
3. walking - I love to be outside and I like to move.
4. shopping - I don't have to buy anything - I just like to look.
5. travel - I don't have to go far, but I like to see new things.
6. television - I won't lie - I love to watch Mad Men, The Closer, and Law and Order. I usually do this while I'm shopping on the Internet. Wheeee!!!!!!!!!!
7. yard art - I don't have any, but looking at it makes me laugh. I saw a chicken in a yard that was taller than a man! THAT is funny! All you have to do is see yard art - it is too much fun.
8. talking to or emailing my friends - I need to make more time for this. My friends are fun. Those that aren't are no longer my friends. Hanging out with those who bring you down is not fun.
9. taunting small children - really, I do like playing with kids - they crack me up. Of course, I get them all riled up and then leave. Wheeee!!!
10. magazines - I know, this is like reading, but not really. I like looking at the pictures and seeing what's current. It's not as in-depth as reading. It's more fluff.

You don't have to agree with or even approve of my list - it's just a random list of things I like, that are fun to me. I'm telling you - make your list and then ALLOW YOURSELF to do some of the things on it. Every day. If you don't have at least 5 minutes for sheer fun everyday, you need to step back. Why are you running so hard? What destination are you trying to get to? Life is short and it passes so quickly. What you'll remember most is all the fun you had. Or didn't have.


KiddoKare1 said...

LOL, Denise! Your list made me laugh. I love it. The riling up small kids reminds me of my son. That's what he does to the kids I take care of, riles them up and then goes upstairs to his room. LOL!

You are so right about not giving ourselves permission to relax and have fun. I find myself doing that all the time. I even have to force myself to relax when I'm sick.

Denise Ryan said...

So true!!! I think women are even harder on themselves than men are! Fun somehow has come to seem like we're doing something wrong! Thanks for taking the time to read this!! : )

Carole said...

Denise--Thanks for the humorous reminder that we need to have more fun...and your list of fun things is similar to mine! I really enjoy reading your blog! Now...I am going to go eat some CANDY!!! :-)

Denise Ryan said...

Thanks, Carole, my partner in candy crime!! Would you believe Vosges has a new combo that may top Chocolate and Bacon? Chocolate and Cheese! Stay tuned!

Heidi said...

Oh m'gosh, I soooo needed this blog entry! Thanks for reminding me that fun is not optional. IT REALLY IS MANDATORY or else when we die we will wonder, why did we live? Or rather, DID we live?
This was a great list, and I was also amazed that all of those people in your seminar couldn't think of 10 things they did for fun. WOW. It really puts things in perspective, to see that people really struggle with this!