To be healthy both physically and mentally, we need work and play in equal proportions. But this rarely happens in today’s frantic world. Instead, work is dominant, often viewed as a virtue or simply a necessity.
For a few, work is highly enjoyable and becomes almost like play. Certainly, this is how all work should be, but rarely is. This is because we have been programmed to think that to survive we need to work. Up to a point that is true, but I don’t think it is true to the extent it is currently portrayed. After all if we don’t have a high powered job, we don’t need the flash car or clothes. We don’t need to spend hours getting to and from work.
People often opt for the most lucrative job to ensure they provide for their families and their hobbies. Or they might opt for sub standard work, well below their capabilities, because they feel they don’t have the skills or education to get a better job.
I don’t think that either of these scenarios work in our best interests. If we dislike our job, even if it is lucrative, we are creating a host of health problems for ourselves. The mind is the driving force behind our health. An unhappy or unfulfilled career creates an unhealthy body.
I well remember sitting in an office many years ago, looking out onto a green field, thinking there must be more to my life than pushing bits of paper around. So I opted out. My current career is far more fulfilling.
When you focus on the income rather than the enjoyment of your work, you are also sending the wrong message to your children. So then they simply perpetuate the whole merry-go-round of our crazy world.
For those who think they are not deserving of a better job, they are also creating health problems for themselves. And they are also sending their children the wrong message.
To be brutally honest, there is very little we do need to survive. And survive happily. If we have access to a small plot of land and learn to grow our own food, we have most of what we need. It is well known that gardening improves our health and well-being. Working with nature calms us, relaxes us and we get healthy food to boot.
And we teach our children far better lessons than school can ever do. After all, we are teaching them how to survive. Basic survival skills when there is no system to fall back on. Isn’t that one of the most important things any child needs to know?
Children are very good at play. They remain totally focused on the moment, totally immersed in what they are doing. It’s a lesson we would do well to re-learn from them.
Often, at the end of a hard week’s work, we have little energy or motivation to play. Instead we vegetate in front of the television, allowing others to manipulate our minds.
However, when we don’t put so much energy into work, when we divide up work and play into equal proportions, we are far more likely to be happier and healthier.
Children can teach us how to play. Another aspect I love about children, which I feel would benefit us well, is to keep asking questions. Many of us don’t question enough for fear of looking a fool or ignorant. If we get into the habit of asking questions about everything we aren’t completely comfortable with, we would be in much stronger positions. We would be able to make much healthier decisions. For ourselves and our families.
Children are great teachers. They know more than we do. Learn to be more like a child:
- ask lots of questions
- balance work and play more or less equally
- laugh and giggle with abandon
- focus totally on what you are doing at any given time