20140817-121710.jpgDay 5 – Feeling Playful

Today’s quote is from George Bernard Shaw. “We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing!”

Today’s centering thought is I am playful.

Today’s Sanskrit mantra is Lila Hum, which means “I am playful.”

From today’s message:
Today’s meditation connects us to the playful nature of our joyful self. Vedic wisdom tells us that all creation arises from Lila, or cosmic play. Expressing our playful nature is a valuable way to stay creative, receptive, and revitalized. When we have fun, we are dancing and singing along with the story of our life. We find our hearts, minds and bodies are lighter and happier. Play time not only makes us feel better, it spiritually rejuvenates us as well.”

The fifth day of Oprah and Deepak Chopra’s Expanding Your Happiness Meditation Experience is on being playful.

These days I do not have any problems being playful. It was always a part of me, and I chose to just be myself a long while ago.

There were moments in my life when I felt I had to stop letting that wonderful part of me out.

Climbing the ladder and being part of management–especially when I was the youngest in my team (the oldest team member started working for the company the year I was born) made me feel like I had to be serious all the time, and since work became my life for many, many years (not anymore, thank goodness), it meant I was serious all the time.

For me being serious all the time, and not allowing myself to be me, took its toll eventually.

I got severely burned out, I was having physical manifestation of illness and pain from stress, and I became increasingly unhappy.

When you become unhappy with your lot in life, it colors every part of your life–family, relationships, work, etc… You lose your perspectives. You forget what is truly important.

Oprah said, “your base level of happiness is determined by how you choose to view and experience your life. See and experience the world through the magical glasses of play and the world lights up.”

This is true. Perception plays a very important role. You can choose to see your glass as half full or half empty. You can make lemonade when life gives you lemons or dwell in the sourness of life. You can choose to feel lack or choose to feel blessed for what you already have. You, and only you, choose what your reality is.

Deepak shared that “there are moments when we feel trapped by things we must do, opinions we must hold, a path we must follow for fear of falling off of it. Because of fear, every day life feels anything but playful. Lila, the spirit of play, embraces joy, spontaneity and fun. In very practical terms, the happiest people make time every day for these things because play time, down time, and time out are important. They allow your brain to refresh itself, renew the spirit. Being too serious or heavy takes us away from our playful, joyful self. It also keeps your spirit from expanding.”

I choose to be my authentic self–whether people will like me or not. This means I allow playfulness to be a major part of me, because this life is a gift. I no longer want to take it for granted.

Every day, there is something for me to be thankful and grateful for!

Every day, there is something new to discover and to learn!

Every day is a miracle, and I feel blessed to have each day I am given in this world.

Visit The Chopra Center to sign up for the free 21-day meditation experience.

(Image and course information are courtesy of The Chopra Center.)

Older posts regarding my meditation journey:
Day 1 – Feeling Joy
Day 2 – Feeling Inspired
Day 3 – Feeling Peace
Day 4 – Feeling Love