Play to get creative

”Playfulness is at the root of creativity.”

(Jo Confino)

When was the last time you played?

What’s the act of playing for me

It is anything that makes you forget about yourself, your “laws&rules”, about serious matters, your HAVE TO-s, allowing yourself to step into a possible world where no one can tell you: “This is not possible!”

When you play everything is possible!

For me, playing is a way to access anything and anywhere as long as you are present.

In order to play, you need to put yourself aside for a while, to give up on your son/parent/employee/whatever role you have and to take on the player one. I think the essential goal of the player is to feel free and enjoy the process.

What happens when you play:

  • you discover yourself
  • learn new things you didn’t know before
  • experiment
  • have fun and your mind is relaxed
  • you feel inspired because all kinds of ideas come to you
  • might get pieced off if you see that you are losing points
  • motivate yourself to become better
  • you search for creative solutions to win
  • you are more tolerant with your own mistakes
  • forget about yourself, limits and time
  • living the present moment to the fullest
  • you are authentic
  • you have the courage to take risks
  • you stimulate your imagination
  • develop your thinking
  • create rules (when you invent your own game)
  • you are detached and not worried

How I played, how I am playing.

I really like to play. I’ve been playing since early childhood (Like anyone else)

So far I have reached level 10 (according to my invented criteria related to age and complexity of games).

When I was little I used to play all kinds of games with my older brother. Some games already existed, others we invented spontaneously, for the sake of the play. We always changed roles and rules,walking or running  around the house, fascinated by what we might discover at the end of games (level 0).

How did you play when you were little & how you play now?

When I was growing up I started playing board games with my parents – Scrabble, Monopoly, Remi (level 3). With my brother and my classmates in school I had discovered games such as Airplanes, Țomapant(romanian game), X and 0, Hangman and we mostly liked Fazan (another wording game) (level 2). In front of the flats we played with artificial snow/polystyren rifles, playing cards – Killer, Kems, Macao and Tabinet (level 1). LEGO pieces fascinated us completely. I still remember that a family friend gifted us a set of pieces. My brother and I were simply overwhelmed with joy (level 4).

In gymnasium I started playing basketball with my friends, flying the freezby, and from time to time I would break another badminton paddle (level 5). It was nice, starting to enjoy team games.

At the same age I use to draw or paint without a specific artistic goal. I would come home from school, do my homework super fast and then forget about myself until the evening. living the intense painting process. At the end I was looking and saying: Hmmm, this could be a …… exercising my own imagination, playing with colors (level 6).

At high school I had already discovered computer games that I really liked (Counter-strike, Worms, Knights&merchants, Bomberman, Abes’s Odyssey, etc.). We had only one computer and I always played & switched with my brother. We were able to argue cruelly if one of us exceeded his time spot (level 7).So funny to recall those times.

When in college I discovered mime/charades, playing card games, Renț(Romanian game, I think), or board games like Risk, Saboteur, Catan and Carcassonne (level 8).

Of all the games I experienced I found charades the most interesting one. I still remember playing this game all the night during a training in Romania. We were people from several countries and we got so excited about the game that we couldn’t stop playing and laughing. I laughed that night like I never in my life. The words or situations proposed in the teams amused so much but required some brain to be creative and express them. I’m still fascinated by this game because asks your creative mind to work in a very short time.

I general I didn’t play to win. I played because I enjoy playing.

Today, after so many years of playing, I still play, I invent REframe exercises&games. I play with myself, with my friends and then I play together with workshop participants (level 9) to change perspectives,  find solutions for real matters. I am doing this since 2013 and I love it.

The principle is the same, the goal is different.

I also play when I create connections between existing things, make creative partnerships, develop REframe business, give others ideas on how they can develop what they already do (level 10).

So far I reached level 10. I am very curious what’s next and how my playing process will evolve.

How do you play?

I am curious what are your stories of playing & being playful.

No matter you’re kid or grown up, “it’s fun to have fun”, so here are just a few ways to play differently that might inspire you:

In an art gallery, at height:

On Space Time Foam

Doing something constructively:

Bottle Bank Arcade:

Find clues to escape:

Puzzling Colors

Thinking with your hands:

LEGO Serious Play:

Ping Pong in circle:

(just ignore the music):

Jumping up and down:

Indoor Amusement Park

Thank you for reading this article!

If you learned something new or you got  a new perspectives on playing please share it with your friends, partners, etc. I will be grateful to you!

If you want to explore HOW we play REframe I invite you to join our workshop event on 5th July, in Aarhus, Denmark to change perspectives, get inspiration and solutions together with other participants!

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For more info please explore our concept, people’s testimonials and online options Private /Business you can choose from.

I wish you a playful day

Article cover photo: Allen Taylor

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