Tag Archives: fun

Want to Have More Fun? Here’s How

I was speaking with a friend the other day and after we finished sharing all the things that were keeping us busy I said, “What are you doing for fun?” There was a long pause. “I’m not really doing anything for fun right now,” she admitted.

This response bothered me. First, because I know my friend works really hard and is going through a challenging time right now, so she more than deserves a little fun in her life, but also because it struck a nerve in me. I was tired of feeling bogged down by all the have-tos life kept throwing my way and I’d been itching to find a way to up the fun quotient. An idea came to me just as I was falling asleep. What if we started out small…like in 5-minute chunks of time? No one can say they don’t have five minutes, right?

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Except this guy.

 

Thus was born the 5-minute challenge.

I was going to set aside five minutes for fun the next day. And the next. And so on. Also, this was an idea that begged to be shared with other people… which means you, dear reader. I decided my 5-minute challenge was going to be hula-hooping. I am embarrassed to admit that I have owned an incredibly cool, grown-up hula hoop for six years, and have only used it a handful of times, the last being more years than I can keep track of.

Hula-hooping can and should occur outside whenever possible. Thankfully I live in Northern California, where it is possible to hula-hoop even in the dead of winter. (Don’t feel too envious about this, however. It costs wads of money to live here so there’s nothing left to put toward the fun fund…thus perpetuating lack of fun). When I’m working I tend to forget that outside even exists, hence the mandatory out-of-doors requirement.

Here’s how DAY 1 went:

First, put on new boots. Fun is more likely to happen if you are wearing fun shoes (and/or glitter). This is a rule.

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Second, swept the area so that hula-hooping could occur. Grownup hula-hoops are quite large, so it’s far too easy to take out potted plants, pets and small children if one is not careful.

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Coco (my dog) says hi, by the way. Also she is quite frightened by the hula-hoop. Perhaps because of its menacing size.

Third, sent documentary photo to friend and officially invited her to join the 5-minute challenge. Haven’t heard back yet, although it’s been hours, so she’s either teaching or afraid (of my potential insanity, not hula-hoops…that’s Coco’s department).

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Fourth, proceeded with 5-minute fun challenge…realized I am terrible at hula-hooping. As in really, really bad. Pathetic. This is sad, but true. I remembered this has been true since I was a kid. Which might be a big part of the reason why the hula-hoop had fallen by the wayside in the first place. Apparently I either need to practice more or find a new method of fun if I plan on continuing the 5-minute challenge.

Maybe abwork. Although that’s not fun, so maybe not. Or abwork could be a different 5-minute challenge…

Now, who’s with me?

I hereby 5-minute-challenge you! Let me know how it goes….

 

Mirror Your Partner

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Mirroring movements is a short, fun exercise to try whenever you have a few spare minutes. Just like in cartoons, it’s guaranteed to get a few laughs, but it’s also a great way to foster connection between partners. Connection is so much of what dance is about, anyway, whether it’s connection to our own emotions and experiences, connection with our Higher Selves, or connection with others. Watching a partner’s movements and mimicking them with our own bodies is a playful way to learn about focusing attention on someone else.

Each child needs a partner, so either have them choose for themselves, or divide the class into two lines, and pair up one child from each line. Next, partners face one another and decide who will lead first and who will follow. Initially, you may want to have them stand in one place and simplify the movements, using one body part at a time, such as the arms, legs, or head. Before starting the music, remind children to proceed slowly in the beginning, so the followers are able to keep up with the leaders.

Once they have mastered simple mirroring, begin to encourage them to explore moving multiple body parts, expanding their shapes, and moving around the room. In the spirit of equality, be sure to set a time limit for the leaders, such as five minutes, and then switch so that leaders will get a chance to be followers and vice versa.

Next time you need a quick break, or a simple exercise to fill in a few extra minutes, try mirroring; it’s guaranteed fun.

I hope you’ll visit the next blog in this week’s blog chain: http://www.terri-forehand.blogspot.com/