In my last post, I ended off by saying we would talk more about healthy fun as often people think that Addiction recovery is a drag and work. The truth is, it is effortful and draining, for sure, but there is also an energy and invigoration that comes from it unlike any other. Where people often go astray is overfocusing on the work parts and completely forgetting to integrate fun into the mix.
What is fun? It’s a sense of lightness and playfulness, that feels energizing. Fun rejuvenates people and brings levity to our lives.
What is healthy fun? This is a deeper question. First off, healthy fun is individual to each person and what is healthy for one person may not be healthy for another. Second, what is healthy at one moment for one person may not be healthy the next for them. Therefore, the ‘healthy’ part of fun is not just reliant on the activity. The health factor is about the motivation going into it. If the motivation is about escape or relief seeking, then this is not health. Addiction is about escape and relief seeking so whatever is being used for those purposes is being corrupted. Third, healthy fun feels calm. Addiction is chaotic, stimulating, and dramatic so if any of those feelings are in the mix, chances are your fun time is being taken over by the unhealthy part of the brain. If you are feeling joyful but still clear, grounded, and centered, then you are on the healthy track.
What are some things that people find fun? Physical activities, creative endeavours, mental games, spending time with friends and family, time outside, animals, humour, quiet time, bubble baths, a good book, escape rooms, laser tag, games, skipping, spontaneity, travel, new experiences, and beyond. Fun can range from the simple to the more extravagant. Fun is not about the activity, it is about the state of mind.
By Paige Abbott
Paige Abbott is a Registered Psychologist in Alberta, Canada. She finds meditation, journaling, boxing, walking, laser tag, playing with her daughter, board games, comedies, dancing around to music, cooking, and having a good laugh fun. She is known for being quite serious but likes to have her fun side to balance this out.