I have been reading “The Happiness Project” and was struck by the author’s definition for fun. Rubin describes fun as something you look forward to, you feel energized with and you do not feel guilty after. The description really resonated with me. I have many activities that I participate in for a number of reasons whether those are health and fitness related or an escape from my reality. I had never thought of whether or not they were fun.
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After going through the checklist, I felt that the most important indicator for me is whether I felt energized afterwards. In my mind, why should I participate in something if I am left feeling exhausted or guilty?
Some activities did not make the list. For example I look forward to spending time with my spouse and children but do not always feel energized afterwards. Other activities such as cleaning and organizing are often energizing for me, but I don’t look forward to them.
The escapes from reality such as casino trips, movies, television and reading were most interesting. I am not sure why I feel like they are necessary. The activities are not for social purposes and I should just as easily be able to meditate or embrace more parts of my daily life. However, I feel the need to be removed from my environment on a semi-regular basis to clear my head of the day to day frustrations that I don’t otherwise communicate well.
In the past there have been other sports related hobbies that met the criteria. Maybe as time goes by, I will be able to include my family and friends in activities that I find fun on a regular basis.