Wednesday, March 30, 2016


The idea of play is interesting to me. Recently I had a discussion with an acquaintance who is going to be able to work directly with some ancient materials and he said, "I can't wait till I get to play with them" then corrected himself to say, "I mean, work with." But I think what he really did mean was play. I think the best work happens when it is play.

Mr Music give me examples of this in several areas. We were recently in Williamsburg and he got his hands on the harpsichord and was playing it, you can tell it is playing and not any sort of formal making music. Sheer enjoyment and his head is obviously somewhere in the playing.  (thanks to Miss Language for the video) He is also the best at his sports when he PLAYS them and as his mom I can tell the difference between him trying to score in whatever game or just playing... and he does so much better when he can get his head in that place of enjoyment. 

One of Miss Dog Lover's doctors has introduced us to the idea of flow theory. One researcher gives these conditions for flow, which I think is like play, to exist: 

  1. Knowing what to do
  2. Knowing how to do it
  3. Knowing how well you are doing
  4. Knowing where to go (if navigation is involved)
  5. High perceived challenges
  6. High perceived skills
  7. Freedom from distractions
Think about it these conditions and play the next time you watch sports, or an academic at his labor of love, or a musician, or a toddler doing a shape sorter - or the same toddler once he has mastered the shape sorter and no longer has any interest in it. I am glad God has made us with abilities and interests and the ability to enjoy using our abilities. What are some areas you hit a flow state in?