You know the saying, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”? Well, it’s true. A life without fun is like sitting through a week’s worth of Days of Our Lives reruns — boring. Actually, it’s like sitting through a week’s worth of new episodes of Days of Our Lives — still boring. Yet these days, work seems to be the top priority and all consuming for many people, with fun a distant afterthought.

If someone asks, “What’s new?” and your only response besides “nothing” is “milk”, it’s a sure sign life’s become a little lacklustre and could use a healthy dose of fun.

Fear not all you “all work and no play” prisoners, I have the solution. Actually I have 7…

1. Be a tourist where you live. For many, times are tough. The annual family trip is being shelved in favour of mortgage payments and grocery bills. A great alternative and way to have more fun is to do as tourists do and explore your local area. Go to an information centre, get hold of tourist brochures, buy a guide book on your area, search the net or check out your local paper for ideas. You might be surprised what you can find right on your doorstep and it’ll generally be cheaper than an over-water bungalow in the Maldives.

2. Decide what you consider fun and write it down. This may seem obvious and unnecessary but how many times have you had a free day or spare time and not really known what to do, only to end up wasting it. Besides, writing down what you find fun is motivating to, well, have fun.

3. Commit to doing 1 small thing a day that you consider fun. Spend 10 minutes playing with your kids/dog/pet snake, read, catch up with a friend, page yourself at work, run butt naked down your street or whatever does it for you. Having fun doesn’t have to be costly or time consuming or involve clothes.

4. Bring fun to work. Yes, I realise this is a radical idea but it is possible to do. If the guys at the Pike Place Fish Markets, famous for their ability to have fun at work, can have a great time throwing around stenchy, slimy, cold fish, then you can bring fun to work too (except of course if you happen to work as a sewer diver). Organise themed morning teas, play music, decorate your office with photos, plants, funny pictures, inspirational quotes, play harmless pranks on co-workers or include funny pictures in presentations. You really don’t have to wait until the weekends to have fun.

5. Hang out with people who know how to have fun. Having fun is contagious, as is laughter and generally the two go hand in hand. Spend regular time with friends and family whose company you enjoy. They are more important than your job anyway.

6. Regularly allocate a whole day purely for fun. For some, a whole day of fun may seem extravagant. To me, even one day without fun of some sort is no way to live. Regularly allocate a full day to do nothing but fun activities, even if you have to schedule it in a diary. You’ll be more balanced, content and productive if you do.

7. Indulge in a hobby or passion. A surefire way to up the fun factor is to have a hobby or passion that you regularly partake in. It’s generally the type of pursuit you really look forward to and while you’re immersed in it, hours can go by without you noticing.

You know, when you’re pushing up daisies, no one is going to remember you for how regularly you mowed the lawn or how clean your windows were or how efficiently you replied to emails. They will remember you for the person you were, the memories you created and the fun times you had. How about giving them plenty of fodder for your eulogy and have a fun time doing it!

Sami May


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