New Year, new you, right? The turn of the calendar, like clockwork, brings a unique and all too common opportunity for reflection and, dare we say it, reinvention. Resolve to eat healthier. To workout more. To travel more or put down roots.
All noble endeavors, yes - but ones that rarely see it to the finish line. Evidence suggests that within a week, 25% of us have failed on our resolutions. A month later, half of us have.
New Year’s resolutions start from a place of great hope, but oftentimes, they become overwhelming stressors that end up making you feel bad. Instead, what if we begin 2023 by focusing on something far simpler? A resolve, simply, to play more.
HOW-TO: CHANNEL YOUR INNER CHILD
Recapture that youthful feeling, and believe it or not - a boost in serotonin and overall health and wellness, by thinking and acting like a child again. No, we're not suggesting you ditch your day job and veto any other adult responsibilities, but there is a proven health benefit to maintaining a youthful perspective.
1. Release your inhibitions.
Adults spend a lot of time worrying about how others perceive their behavior, but this can leave you feeling stressed and self-conscious. To feel more youthful, even just temporarily, don’t worry about appearing stupid, silly, or crazy. Head to the arcade for some friendly competition, break out a good book, laugh (loudly), or toss out your schedule for the day and embrace spontaneity.
2. Embrace naptime again.
This one may be our favorite, or at least a close second. This time of the day used to be non-negotiable. You had a nap so you could recharge and avoid being crabby. Without a nap, you became snotty, with an attitude that would crack over the smallest thing. Know any adults that still act this way today? Nap time is good. 15-minute power naps and 10-minute breaks for meditation are good habits to form.
3. Try something and fail.
As a kid, you had no idea what the word failure meant. As far as you were concerned, you were going to try things no matter what to see if you liked them. There was only exploring and no dead ends. Get back to trying stuff again and disconnect yourself from whether or not you’re deemed to be successful by someone else’s standards.
4. Tackle a new project and be creative.
Last but certainly not least, and perhaps our true favorite. Find a new way to play. Most of our childhood was spent being creative. Channel that inner creativity in an output that will inspire play for years to come (for kids of all ages - adults included): visit your local arcade, or BYO home game room.
Stock it with board games and books, easy access snacks and perhaps most fun for everyone - arcade classics. Games like authentic Skee-Ball alleys and Pac Man are finding new homes every day in finished basements, rec rooms, man caves, and even outdoor entertainment spaces. Designing a game room doesn't have to be a challenge. Channel your inner child, dare to dream big, compile your own game room ideas and inspiration, and don't forget to bring the arcade home in Skee-Ball.
Think of these me-hancements as favors for future you (and your family); ones that are not measured by numbers on a scale, rather measured in moments, in laughter, and as a result, in overall happiness.