Non-Profit Trusted Source of Non-Commercial Health Information
The Original Voice of the American Academy of Anti-Aging, Preventative, and Regenerative Medicine
logo logo
Lifestyle Anti-Aging Anti-Aging Tip Sheets Behavior

Adult Playtime: Cultivating Happiness

9 months ago

7219  0
Posted on Aug 25, 2023, 3 p.m.

Play can add joy to your life, relieve stress, and connect you to others as well as the world around you. Playtime is not just for kids, it is also a time to forget about work and other commitments and a time to be social in a fun, creative, and even unstructured way. You really don’t need a reason to have fun, and there doesn’t need to be any point to the activity beyond simply enjoying yourself. 

All work and no play makes for not much fun. Many people claim that they are too busy to have fun, and some even say that they are too old, while some people just fall into a pattern of lazy blah blahs, and some people aren’t sure of what to do. There are lots of activities to do and plenty of them cost very little or no money at all. We’ve collected a bunch of activities to do in this article that we hope will help inspire you to get moving, laugh, and have fun.

There are so many things to do that whatever your age, interest or abilities are you can enjoy hobbies and pastimes that can make you laugh, probably lose track of time, and maybe even feel like a young kid at heart again. Some of the best activities are free, and according to a study four out of the top five activities that most adults enjoy are in nature while being very active: walking/jogging, gardening/yard work, playing sports, and other physical pursuits. 

Playtime could be goofing around with friends, playing with your pet, or you can play sports or active games, dance, sing karaoke, take up a form of performance arts, attend parties or social gatherings, try out puzzles or another traditional game, garden, go bird watching or another animal interaction like a petting zoo, you could try your hand at arts and crafts, partake in an outing or explore in an excursion, and active learning can be fun as well as educational. 

Active games and sports, including leisure sports, provide the opportunity for exercise, improving hand-eye coordination, and promoting a sense of control which can be very satisfying, especially if it involves overcoming obstacles or friendly competition. Activities in this area include pickleball, croquet, bocce ball, pool, golf, swimming, polo, shuffleboard, tennis, badminton, frisbee, frisbee golf, volleyball, curling, baseball, bowling, horseshoes, soccer, roller skating, and football among others.

Forms of performance arts like dancing to music can connect your body to rhythms that may help you to relax and unwind, more exciting rhythms also provide exercise. Singing even if you do it badly can help you to find and enjoy humor while reminding you to avoid taking everything so seriously. Trying to act or being in a comedy skit can let you tell stories in new and creative ways while bringing a smile to your face. Activities in this area include karaoke, painting, drawing, stand-up comedy or improv, reading books to other people, writing or acting skits, dance troupes, acting in a play, singing in a choir, playing an instrument, and many forms of dancing. 

Parties and social gatherings can be daunting, but they can also be a powerful way to inject a little more fun into your life, especially if you get to reminisce about old times and other things that interest you. These types of events also help us to develop stronger social bonds that help us to become more resilient during stressful times. There are many groups and clubs that you can join that hold regular gatherings, some of them may even be themed events like a casino night, trivia night, murder mystery, ugly sweater night, or formal tea at high noon, and you may even be able to plan your own event.

Some great fun can be had by doing puzzles, and playing board and card games while you are socializing and enjoying the challenges of friendly competition. As an added benefit these kinds of games can help to keep your mind sharp while providing that sense of progress and accomplishment. There’s no shortage of options in this category such as backgammon, chess, cribbage, poker, bridge, rummy, canasta, Yahtzee, checkers, dominoes, Pictionary, scrabble, uno, boggle, solitaire, euchre, crazy eights, darts, rummoli, mahjong, trivial pursuit, charades, scavenger hunts, crossword puzzles, jigsaw puzzles, and word searches. 

Outdoor pastime times and animal interactions are fun and can be mutually beneficial. As long as you like the weather outside there are so many things to do and places to explore, as a plus being outside can do wonders for your mood. Nature can be wonderful, full of lovely sights, sounds, smells, and other delights to please your senses. You could go to a zoo, volunteer at an animal shelter, go some gardening or yard work, walk in a park, go hiking, have a picnic at the beach, go for a boat ride, canoe, kayak, bird watch, stroll in a nature preserve, search for treasure by metal detecting, take up nature photography, and you could literally go fly a kite.

Hobbies are wonderful, it’s hard not to like arts and crafts. These creative recreational pursuits are fun at any age, and they can reignite vitality and inspire a sense of accomplishment. While some people may be better than others, the point is to have fun regardless of skill level. You could try painting, knitting, macrame, ceramics, papercraft, sketching, woodcraft, mosaics, drawing, clay modeling, beading, crochet, quilting, paper mache, latch hooking, sewing, needlepoint, origami, colouring, sculpturing, pottery, embroidery, weaving, calligraphy, scrapbooking, and jewelry making among others. 

Many options can be found when it comes to outings and excursions whether you go it alone or with a group of friends. Just because you may not exactly be a kid anymore doesn’t mean that you are not young at heart, and you shouldn’t let your age stop you from enjoying going on field trips to explore, laugh, and get in some fun, quality bonding time. Getting out of the house is important, and if you are looking for something more structured you could consider going to a museum, science center, art gallery, or theatrical performance. If you are looking for something more adventurous you could consider going to a theme park, carnival, comedy club, arcade, county fair, concert, sporting event, festival, winery, or beer tasting. 

Active learning can be fun, but it is always more fun when it is something you are interested in, and learning can open up new avenues of possibilities. Learning is beneficial at any age, follow your curiosity and impulses to challenge your mind and exercise your brain. You could consider learning to play a musical instrument, learn a new language, learn to cook, decipher hieroglyphics, cook exotic meals, perform magic tricks, learn how to use computers more effectively, improve your photography, or learn how to design a website. 

Enjoyable activities can have several benefits such as improving how your brain works, improving your mental and emotional well-being, strengthening relationships, boosting creativity, stimulating your mind, as well as improving your physical vitality, and extending your lifespan. Playtime should be a major part of life for everyone, not just children. No matter your age, it is probably safe to say that we can all use more joyful experiences. 

This article was written by Tamsyn Webber at worldhealth.net

As with anything you read on the internet, this article should not be construed as medical advice; please talk to your doctor or primary care provider before changing your wellness routine. This article is not intended to provide a medical diagnosis, recommendation, treatment, or endorsement.

Opinion Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy of WHN/A4M. Any content provided by guest authors is of their own opinion and is not intended to malign any religion, ethic group, club, organization, company, individual, or anyone or anything.

Content may be edited for style and length.

References/Sources/Materials provided by:

https://www.greatseniorliving.com/articles/fun-activities-for-seniors

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0197457214004133

https://www.helpguide.org/articles/mental-health/benefits-of-play-for-adults.htm

https://extension.usu.edu/mentalhealth/articles/how-hobbies-improve-mental-health

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2921311/

https://hub.jhu.edu/magazine/2016/summer/neuroscience-of-fun/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8158911/



WorldHealth Videos