Sky Lakes Medical Center | Live Smart | Late Spring 2021

4 LIVE smart | Late Spring 2021 You’re never too old to play Playtime reduces stress, promotes creativity Although your hopscotch days are probably far behind you, there’s plenty to be gained by channeling your inner child when it comes to play. That’s right: Playtime is for grownups, too, and it’s not only fun but actually good for you. From being playful with a partner to cuddling a kitten to joking with your favorite jokesters, play is pretty much anything that’s done just for joy. The benefits of being amused, according to experts, include decreased stress and increased relaxation. And you know what they say about all work and no play. Goofing off may even help you get more done. That’s because play may stimulate your creativity and problem- solving skills, perhaps helping you to bust through a mental block and complete an important project. Adults at play Like anything else that doesn’t earn you a paycheck, the trick is to fit playtime into your busy day. Here’s how: Make work breaks playdates. Instead of checking your phone, toss a football with a co-worker or practice some yo-yoing tricks. Play with a pet after work. Maybe that’s fetch with your dog or a string-and-toy game with your cat. Enjoy a freewheeling, weekend bike ride. As you pedal away, leave your cares behind and just enjoy the soft wind in your face as you move through the world in a blissful blur. Beat boredom with an evening board game. Clear off the kitchen table and gather your family. Be spontaneous with your partner. Show off your silliest celebrity impression. Pen a funny love poem. Lie on a blanket in the grass and try to spot animal shapes in the clouds. Do something you enjoyed as a kid. Build a model muscle car or buy a coloring book for adults. Enlist a pro. Play with your kids, grandkids, nephews or nieces. Together, take a backyard journey to a fanciful castle, pretend to ride a rocket ship through the rings of Saturn or run around a park like there’s no tomorrow— tag, you’re it . Source: HelpGuide STEP OUTSIDE Try a local trail. Get maps and more at .