In the beginning, play is the work of children. It serves to provide a safe methodology for young people to learn “the rules” associated with specialized roles through play and games.
By adopting a specific role and adapting to the specific rules which govern the role, the child hopefully discovers the fun and joy of being ready, willing and able to achieve role-rule mastery by doing what is expected through play and games.
Roles also provide an exploratory opportunity to “try on a different face’ and then to see what that face looks like. Our “face” is what we allow others to see when they look at us, our external personification or the mask we reveal.
One can make-believe that a made-up face is not really a made-up face and then act “as-if” the made-up face is real! Or else, we can risk removing the mask which conceals the true face which no longer is hidden.
Play makes possible the societal sanctioning of our acting “as-if” we can be anyone and do anything, with most players stipulating to the premise they are just playing.
However, some players may forget the “as-if” boundary and actually become the mask they wear. In the extreme, an individual might confuse make-believe with reality and cross over to the "dark side".
Knowing “the rules” requires experience transgressing them. We develop a sense of doing right from doing wrong and eventually discovering that doing right has more benefits than doing wrong, since one can usually know what is right by knowing what is wrong.
Role-rule mastery enables us to be who we need to be in any given context in order to “fit-in” and do what is expected. The challenge is to know what is expected as change is always a constant.
Our expectations provide one important template within which and through which we look and see. Perception occurs almost instantaneously and “we only get one opportunity to make a good first impression”.
However, perception is faulty at times and is an unreliable means to approximate reality or truth. This is where “seeing is believing” or alternatively, “believing is seeing” can 'play' tricks on our mind. Play and games invite each of us to consider all options.
Consider the word “recreation”. Its root is “recreate” and means engaging in enjoyable and fun activities at our own leisure. If, however, we hyphenate the word, “recreation” to read, “re-creation”, we soon recognize that to recreate is to re-create, therefore, recreation is inextricably interwoven with re-creation, and vice-versa.
Play activities often provide a safe and effective means by which one can "re-create" oneself over and over through recreation.
There is an old saying “that all work and no play make Jack a dull boy”. The point is to acquire relative balance of imbalances in life by apportioning one’s resources across the multiple life-domains of work, love and play.
Furthermore, recreational endeavors serve to “break the frame” and facilitate looking and seeing life from an altogether different, albeit, “as-if” perspective.
Thereafter, we can either continue to “make-believe” or “make-happen”!
PERSONAL MENTORING SERVICES (PMS) can help you "play" well.