Episode 188: 71 Ways to Add Play to Your Day

July 27, 2021

For the past two months, we’ve explored the importance of rest, relaxation, and play. Today, we want to leave you with 71 ways to add play to your day. You’ll see some of the suggestions are silly, some are spontaneous, and some you might think aren’t fun at all. And that’s ok.

Our Invitation

Here’s our invitation: add to the list and make it your own. When someone says “I’m bored,” pull out the list, ask for a number and take five minutes to add play to your day.

We don’t walk through all 71 ideas on the podcast, that’s what this list below is for. Instead, we have a short conversation about coming up with this list and one idea on the list.

Enjoy! Or maybe we should say, “have fun!”

Write it Down/Talk it Out

  • Create a “play” list – what activities can you do for hours on end?  
  • Put play on your calendar if you need to. 
  • Include others in moments of fun and play.

71 Ways to Add Play to Your Day

  1. Laugh
  2. Toss a ball
  3. Kick a ball
  4. Color (outside the lines)
  5. Grab a board game
  6. Grab a deck of cards
  7. Get on the floor with a child and play with their toys
  8. Experiment in the kitchen with a new recipe
  9. Go to a ballgame
  10. Go to a park
  11. Go for a bike ride (or take a scooter for a ride)
  12. Swing on the swings
  13. Slide on a slide.
  14. Write with your non-dominant hand
  15. Go for a walk or a run
  16. Play catch with your dog
  17. Jump in a pool (that’s deep enough to jump in)
  18. Splash in a bathtub
  19. Have a pillow fight
  20. Play hide and seek
  21. Play a childhood game outdoors
  22. Listen to your favorite music 
  23. Have a dance party – for five minutes in the kitchen
  24. Set a timer and dance like no one is watching for five minutes
  25. Lay in the grass and look at the clouds
  26. Pick a flower
  27. Paint with your fingers
  28. Paint with watercolors
  29. Draw with your eyes closed
  30. Draw a flower/plant/still object without looking at your paper
  31. Draw an object from memory without picking up your pen (toilet, a flower in a vase, an oven, the console in a car)
  32. Blow bubbles (with bubble gum or a wand) 
  33. Make a rootbeer float
  34. Skip a rock on a lake (or sink it)
  35. Go swimming
  36. Take a boat ride/Go kayaking
  37. Go fishing
  38. Take a hike 
  39. Have a picnic
  40. Play in a sandbox
  41. Plant seeds/bulbs
  42. Eat dessert first
  43. Leave your phone at home
  44. Do what you want for an entire day
  45. Start the day with a joke or “groaner” Did you hear about the house with the roof? It’s over your head.
  46. Tell a knock-knock joke.
  47. Eat breakfast for dinner
  48. Sew something for fun – without a machine.
  49. Take 10 pictures of someone you love (use your cell phone)
  50. Take a selfie to remember a moment of fun
  51. Host an unbirthday party for the people you work with
  52. Celebrate an ordinary moment with ___
  53. Give a standing ovation at an unexpected moment
  54. Movie night in your PJs 
  55. Toss confetti at the end of a long day! You made it!
  56. Sit down with someone and make a list of fun things to do this summer. Have fun doing it. 
  57. Play dodgeball
  58. Jump in the deep end of a pool (if you know how to swim)
  59. Follow the spontaneity of a child
  60. Have a tea party 
  61. Find designs in the bark of a tree, the clouds, pavement, flowers, etc.  
  62. Share a silly memory of the person you’re with right now.
  63. Play kickball, volleyball, cornhole
  64. Jump rope
  65. Jump on a pogo stick
  66. Jump on a trampoline
  67. Jump on the bed (…while singing no more monkeys jumping on the bed…) 
  68. Jump in a puddle after the rain
  69. Play in the rain
  70. Read or listen to a book
  71. Play eye spy.