by Michael Darling
The experts say that Love, Work and Play are the most important elements of a psychologically healthy life.
All are equally important and I'll admit that I struggle with this balance every day. I honestly think I've forgotten how to play.
I will admit that PLAY is a dead-last concern for most of us, myself included..if it's a concern at all. Recent studies over the past 15 years proved increasing amounts of our energy are going into our work. Americans are working harder and longer than ever before. The typical adult's leisure time has shrunk from 26.6 to 16.6 hours a week. In addition, the typical work week is 15% longer than it was 10 years ago.
Sadly, while we're working longer and harder, we don't seem to be getting more done or doing it better. Tension and fatigue do not produce top performance in anyone. Oddly, what the research is showing is that if we want to be more productive, we need not play more.
If you don't think those who make time for fun really don't have anything too important to do, read on:
....a little sailboat slipped across a small lake near Princeton N.J. Skillfully sailing it was a lone passenger and was a familiar sight to other boaters on the lake. Sometimes, the boat would swerve dangerously close to other boats and the skipper could be seen smiling with sheer delight. And often, when the breeze died, the boat would come to a complete standstill and he would just sit in it and let it drift for hours. Occasionally, the boat ran aground; her skipper too absorbed in his thoughts to notice. His greatest delight was to be in his sailboat, playing with wind and water. Even when he ran aground, he'd cheerfully wave off passing boaters who asked "Herr Professor Einstein, do you need help?"
Albert Einstein took time to have fun and clear his mind - perhaps the greatest mind of the 20th century - by sailing often.
Work AND Play, in balance, lead to top performances by geniuses and regular folk alike. We knew this as kids...but many of us have forgotten, haven't we?
Thanks for reading...