Image Credit: Unsplash
Playfulness is a trait that appears across the animal kingdom. All animals to it to some extent and for some, like us humans, play isn’t confined to childhood but continues throughout life. You might say that playfulness is an essential part of the human condition - after all, if we didn’t like to play so much, we wouldn’t pay celebrities to dress up and pretend to be other people in films.
It is important for everyone to enjoy some playtime. It might sound a bit patronizing but play time is the only chance you get to let your hair down and do something fun. Play is usually sociable, gives you a chance to practice the skills and behaviors that make you human (logic, memory, teamwork etc) and learn in a relaxed and fun way.
Play Gives You a Boost
When you play, you release the hormones that make you feel happy and relaxed: dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin and endorphins. These hormones are important because they are what make you feel good about yourself and the environment you are in. Essentially, when you are having a good belly laugh, these hormones are the reason you feel so good.
Playing releases these hormones, reducing your stress and improving your mood. This is true whether you are playing a team game like basketball or you have just won using a virgin online casino promo code. To maximize the boost you get, you should focus on playing the games that bring you the most joy. This isn’t necessarily something you are good at, just something that gets you thinking and laughing and having fun.
Play Improves Your Problem-Solving Skills
Most games are about solving problems, whether you are solving the problem that your team doesn’t have as many points as the other or you are working your way across a digital plane solving a zombie-apocalypse type of problem. And, let’s face it, solving problems is what life is all about.
For the most part, games are really just good at teaching you how to solve the particular problem in front of you and many brain training games are more about getting good at the game rather than actually boosting IQ. However, there is a pretty good argument for the idea that learning the different methods for solving different types of problem is also a really useful skill to have.
Play Brings Us Together
When you think of all the best memories you have with your friends, you can almost guarantee that the ones that spring to mind are those where you were playing or letting out your inner child. Messing and joking around or actually sitting down to play a game, any form of play gives you a chance to get closer to someone by lowering the boundaries we put around more formal interactions. When you play, you get to test the waters for other types of behaviors, expose your personality and depth without fear and express new ideas.
In short, play brings us together and makes us more human.