Diet Day 11 – Another New Year’s Resolution – Have Fun at Work!

Cover of "301 Ways to Have Fun at Work"

Cover of 301 Ways to Have Fun at Work

I like to have Fun.  In fact I am at my best when I’m having fun, and honestly who isn’t?  But what exactly does fun mean? …………

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Fun is the enjoyment or pleasure and, according to Johan Huizinga, “an absolutely primary category of life, familiar to everybody at a glance right down to the animal level.”[1] Fun may be encountered in many human activities during work, social functions, recreation and play, and even seemingly mundane activities of daily living. The distinction between enjoyment and fun is difficult to articulate but real,[2] fun being a more spontaneous, playful, and active event.
Fun can also refer to the activity itself that is enjoyable, thus “skiing is fun”, however, a bad fall may “take the fun out of skiing”.
The perception of time is shortened when one is “having fun”.[3]

via Fun – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

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What I found amazing about this quote was that work was up there as one of the primary places where we can have fun, but how often do we really create an environment in the office, where fun can happen spontaneously between colleagues?  I work in a multi-national environment, where actually you need to know the limits of where to be able to have fun first.  Language and understanding of jokes varies dramatically across the nationalities, with formal and personal barriers too.  But with a little forethought (and avoidance of ‘national jokes’ unless you know your colleagues very well), you can manage to create an environment where you can all behave like ‘little kids’ on a regular basis.  And actually that is the key.  Have you watched kids play together?  They have fun without even talking.  My own kids when younger, were a classic example of this.  On camping holidays, they’d head off to find fun, always with other kids, and it didn’t matter if they spoke the language or not, they played.  They found a way of laughing and sharing, without the need for language.  When we use language to have fun, we often do it at the expense of others.  When we take away language, we have to do things together to create fun.

Don’t forget,  You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation (Plato).

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So why not have fun at work?  Having fun stimulates creativity, releases feel-good endorphins and creates a healthy environment. Laughter is a great release, beats stress, and makes you feel years younger.  It brings people together, builds good team spirit and breaks down barriers.  Throwing a ball round the office or a frisbee (not the stapler which I have done in my dark and distant past!), sharing a funny personal moment, throwing a birthday party, there are lots of ideas out there.

I like the idea of creating a Fun Company inside your workplace, and to ask yourself the question each day, ‘am I having fun yet?’ If not, sing a song (that happens in my office a lot, without naming names!), or turn on the radio and start guessing singers/bands, or list your favourite films and argue over it.  Trade YouTube comedy clips.  Play jokes on each other (my design team were experts at that!).  Take food into work and make your colleagues smile (and fat!!) with goodies you’ve made or bought.  Play mini basketball, or do a mind wasting game on your iphone like ‘Paper Toss’ or ‘Sheep’.  Quote something silly off the internet.  etc etc.  Just make sure you don’t do them all at once, all day, or in the presence of the Big Bosses………..Have fun!!

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References

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301 Ways to Have Fun at Work.

During this week I have come across a new internet site called The Management Innovation eXchange.  I had read a few articles before I stumbled on this one, which kicked off the idea of writing about fun at work.  It’s a site I plan to look at on a regular basis.

Here’s a Resolution Worth Working On: Have More Fun | Management Innovation eXchange.

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And of course, shop for fun from Etsy;

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T73 In all living have much fun and laughter by VinylLettering.
Have Fun With Your Life by trulyvera on Etsy.
Laugh hot pink Circle Pendant by snappypendants on Etsy.
Article Header;
A Dozen Smiles Glass Push Pins by teresasart on Etsy.
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