LIFE IS A GAME – How to Lighten Up & Have Fun As You Play

LIFE IS A GAME – How to Lighten Up & Have Fun As You Play

lighten upYears ago I heard about a school that was experiencing a lot of littering. The students didn’t care to throw their wraps in the garbage cans and penalties didn’t seem to solve the problem.  Then one teacher came up with the idea to put baskets, much like basketball baskets, above the garbage cans. The students soon discovered that throwing garbage in the cans was a really fun game. They were excited about the challenge to throw their garbage into the cans and soon the school was spotless. What a great way to lighten up the dreaded littering issue and resolve it in such a fun way.

I was reminded of this story last weekend, when my partner John made his way from the bedroom to the kitchen playing soccer with a plastic bag until he reached the recycling bin. What a fun way to take care of recycling. John is my inspiration when it comes to turning chores into play-time. Personally, I love to lighten up with some great Latin music and dance as I mop the floors. It makes cleaning so much more fun.

We grown-ups can take ourselves and the game called life too serious at times. Lighten up and reconnect with the child within you, (s)he knows how to turn chores into fun. Here’s how you create a game out of otherwise mundane and boring tasks that you might dread and therefore put off:

  • Connect to the child within you and ask how (s)he would approach the task at hand.
  • If you have a hard time getting in touch with your inner child, ask yourself how a child you know might approach this chore.
  • Listen carefully.
  • Then follow her/his advice and have fun with it.

How does your inner child most like to lighten up? Please post your most creative ideas here for other readers to be inspired. Thank you!

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Julia James

Julia James is a certified life coach and award-winning author of the book, The Mini-Retreat Solution. With over ten years experience coaching people through positive career transformations, Julia is passionate about helping people connect with their true calling.


  1. Russell Reply

    I remember as a kid cutting patterns in the lawn with the lawn mower as a game. By the time I finished the lawn properly it probably took longer but time passed much faster and it did not seem like a chore.

    • Julia Reply

      Thank you for sharing, Russell! What a great idea!
      How will you use this inspiration from you as a kid to approach chores today?
      Julia 🙂

  2. Maureen Flynn Reply

    When the kids were younger, on house cleaning day my husband, kids and I would write all the chores down on separate pieces of paper. Then, on separate pieces of paper we’d write down lots of fun things to do, like play a board game, Mom or Dad read a book to kids, have a snack, coffee break for Mom and Dad or play catch outside. All would go into a jar together and we’d let the kids take turn picking. The rule was we had to finish the drawn chore or fun activity before we could draw the next one. Chores were done quickly so as to pick the next event. We even included things like do homework or take the dog for a walk. Everyone loved this game, which is what it became – not a chore day at all. It became a day to work and play together and it accomplished much more than having a clean house, it was a happy house.

    • Julia Reply

      Wonderful! Thank you for sharing, Maureen!
      I hope this memory will inspire you to play to this fun game “a day to work and play together” again with your family. May you inspire lots of readers to give this game a whirl! 🙂
      Julia 🙂

  3. Milena Reply

    Great post!
    Many times life would be easier if we could see it as a game. I try to do that each time when I feel that things are getting too serious and difficult. It works well for me and I hope it can work for somebody else too.


    • Julia Reply

      Thank you for your comment, Milena! We all can benefit from playfulness when it comes to facing our challenges.
      Julia 🙂

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