“We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.”
George Bernard Shaw (Irish Literary Critic, Playwright and Essayist, 1925 Nobel Prize for Literature, 1856-1950)
I’ve always liked this quote. I have no scientific proof to back this up, but I’ve always felt that people who have fun in life live longer (or at the very least considerably happier).
I also believe that the couple that plays together, stays together (yes, the original saying is about the couple that prays together but my version works too!) So on the basis of this (and my insatiable curiosity about human relationships) I set out to ask some of the happiest couples I know whether or not my theory held true.
I was amazed firstly, by how open people are willing to be (not that I’m complaining, it worked very much in my favour) and then by how much there is to learn and apply if you’re interested. Unfortunately, with the stresses of modern life, in-between the job, the bills, the kids, the gym, the business on the side, having fun often quickly becomes a dim, distant memory.
The one recurring fact I heard was that it is something that you must make time for – it won’t happen on its own.
Sitting on the couch reading a book while she watches TV or poking about on your iPad in the same room as he’s doing some work on his laptop do not count as bonding activities or having fun together!
Take time to find out what your significant other’s idea of fun is and make the effort to join in wholeheartedly. If he’s a golfer, try walking the course with him while he plays. If she’s into history, then plan a holiday somewhere rich in culture and historic monuments – you get the idea!
Take up a new joint hobby.....cooking, salsa, cage diving: whatever rocks your collective boat.
Play games together (and I’m not talking about the French maid’s outfit although if that’s your thing.....!). There are lots of board games aimed specifically at adult couples, why not check out a few and have a giggle. They range from the funny (like Dirty Minds or Pick-up Lines) to the naughty (think Between the Sheets, an adult form of Twister) or romantic (such as An Enchanted Evening)
Exercise together. Everybody knows exercise releases endorphins. Why not take advantage of that fact to share them with your partner? You could take up a new sport that neither of you has played before – watching each other repeatedly drop serves at tennis could be hilarious (or humiliating if you’re the only one doing the dropping!!)
Whatever it is you choose to do, the key is to do it together. It’ll keep you close and keep you feeling young. Truth be told, there are quite a few games suitable for adults only, and some for the entire family. What has been said above holds true for family time too. It is all about interacting with those we love and spending time together as a family. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
Seriously, in this world of rapid technology, plain old interaction and communication builds memories which last.