JW Way Fundamental #27: Don’t take yourself too seriously “Maintain a healthy perspective on your work and professional life. There are more important things going on in the world than your daily challenges. And remember to have fun. Fun renews our spirit, keeps us energized, and helps us think more clearly. “
Recently, I went to a concert. It wasn’t a band that I knew well and honestly, it was not my style of music. You know the kind of music that you’d never play in your car but your spouse might? I was prepared to not enjoy the evening. It was an indoor concert, there were a lot of people, and I had a blast! People were celebrating – maybe with a bit too much alcohol and most certainly some cannabis – but isn’t that what Uber was made for? There was dancing – some good and a lot of it just unbridled movement. There was joy. And, then the bass came. It rattled my body and it felt g-r-e-a-t.
In all the caution that the pandemic brought, I forgot how good it felt to experience something live and with others. Vicarious living is just not the same. I had minimized how much the shared experience is the experience. The vibe is infectious.
And, it needs to be in person. Maybe large crowds or the long lines at Disneyland aren’t your thing. That is ok. However, be ok with the crowds and the hassle to get to the event or your destination. The jostling, the bumping elbows, the lines, the extra security checks. It is just part of participating. The value of the shared experience is worth the temporary inconvenience. No one said that great experiences come easily nor should they.
Do something you love – or forgot that you loved – again. Humans love routine and changing their habitual routine can be hard. There may be anxiety about going to a play or a concert or even the movie theater. It may require finding someone to go with you as your spouse or closest friend may not have the same interests, or desire, that you do. Or you may find yourself at an event, that isn’t really your thing but is your spouse’s, and surprisedly you enjoy it.
Celebrate for a moment. Forget the pressures, stress, and consistent bad news cycle. There is an overwhelming amount of negative news. It is easy to get caught up. Let go and just celebrate. It can be a more solitary event such as taking a morning hike or it can be group of friends taking kids to the neighborhood park. Take the moment to enjoy the chaos of the sideline at a youth soccer game. Maybe the kids aren’t good, but so what? Plan little or plan big; just celebrate both the must-dos – kid’s obligatory birthday parties, family gatherings, and soccer games as well as the big moments. There is joy to be found in the celebrating the moment.
So, what are you going to do? You can continue as you have been or you can step out daringly. There are plenty of activities that are low cost and ones that you can spend a lot on. If concerts are your thing, get pre-sale access or watch for their $20 ticket sales. Not great seats, but you are there. We have four major league sports teams and a couple of minor leagues as well. Take in a live sports event, or if that is too much, enjoy it responsibly at a sports bar. Take your kids or your grandkids to a park, to the zoo, to a free splash pad. Whatever you chose to do, I hope that it is bone rattling fun.
About the Author: Brenda Edwards is the Executive Director of Jaburg Wilk. She frequently writes on law firm management topics.