I think the best part about working with children is learning to play again

Early in our teens we stop playing. Society has this idea that play, at least improvised play, is only for children, and something we naturally grow out of. The only sort of "play" that is seen as "appropriate" for adults are organized games with set rules, and usually a goal

Anyway, that's BS. Today, I played with marbles. I built a tower out of building blocks. Last week, I drew a picture - not to "create" anything, just to have fun with pencils on paper. One day when I was not actually at work, I went to a playground to climb on a 2-meter-high rock. It was difficult (how did i do this when i was little??) and I was proud of myself when i did it

I can't believe I'm only 19 and have already missed out on this for half my life. And the only way I can accept that is if I promise myself that I'll never stop playing again

"Work" is defined as an activity directed towards a goal

I'd say "play" is the opposite of that - any activity that you do for the sake of the activity itself, without aiming towards a "goal"

We have this idea that work is for adults, play is for kids. As we grow up, we turn everything into a goal-directed activity.

We play a sport to win, or to stay healthy. We draw to create something beautiful. We cook to make food. We climb an obstacle to get to the other side. We read a book to finish it. We watch a movie in the evening to relax, and then are confused when we can't.

Capitalism brainwashes you into thinking that you've grown out of playing. It wants you to think that you can't possibly enjoy an activity for its own sake anymore, so you need an "incentive"

Don't fall for it, and play as often as you can

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@ijyx This is good thinking. In my own reflection, I've found that in general my diminished desire to "play" is correlated with my diminished curiosity as I've aged.

There's a cool documentary on netflix about the science on early childhood development, and the episode on curiosity really made my think about how my psychology has changed. Now you've got me thinking about how those changes have been induced through socialized.

@ishara This really makes sense to me

Play, to me, is spontaneous. I have an idea, and I pursue it in that moment. If I have time to create plans or goals, I automatically will, and that'll make the activity less fun. When I really manage to *play*, it's because I follow through on a spintaneous idea

Learning is actually an example of that. If I have the idea (e.g. a question, or the impulse to study something) and immediately follow through on it, I'll enjoy the process and be tempted to learn more. If the idea comes from somewhere else (e.g. a school assignment) or I take the time to turn it into a task ("hey, duolingo was fun today. I should set myself a goal to do it *everyday*), that'll have pretty much the opposite effect

@ijyx

You know that phrase "mind blown"? I feel like that now but like. Lots and lots of little explosions in the brain.

Lots to mull on.

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Barry Peddycord III

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