Why Your Brain Needs a Play Date

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Penguin at Sea World_Connie Mann

No matter what that cute little rodent, Punxsutawney Phil, predicted, it’s STILL winter. It was 36 degrees in Florida this morning. That is not my preferred climate, not by a long shot. My body and my brain need a play date!

Cold weather keeps us huddled inside, and as winter drags on, we get cabin fever. Tunnel vision. We’re trying to keep from strangling the cat/kids/spouse because we’ve been cooped up together for too long. We just. Want. Out.

Penguin at Sea World_Connie Mann

Sea World Penguin awaiting his expanded home and play area

I think our brains get that way, too. Practical concerns start closing in, deadlines and to-do lists force us inside our heads, and we spend too much time hunched over a desk pounding away at the keyboard.

To-do lists are necessary and helpful, especially for the business side of our creative endeavors, but they can become a negative, too. Wear blinders for too long and what started as a helpful groove quickly becomes a mind-numbing rut. Creativity disappears and we start wondering which Caribbean island our muse disappeared to. And would she please come back.

It’s time for a break, a little escape, a play date for your brain. Let it roam free of obligations for a while, and you’ll be amazed at the results.

Today, turn off the computer and the to-do list and take a break. Go play. Even if its only for a few minutes.

  • Go outside—even if it’s really, really cold
  • Read a book that’s completely different from what you usually read
  • Look at photos of exotic locales (dare I say, Pinterest?)
  • Meet a friend for coffee and brainstorm a fun new activity
  • Browse an antique shop, or visit a store you’ve never been to
  • Try an activity you’ve never done—or haven’t done in a long while. Bowling? Biking? Painting?
  • Spend fifteen minutes doing something you want to do, but never have time to do
  • Play what-if with a current project

Just a few minutes of playtime will make a huge difference. Will you try it and let me know how it goes?

PS—Angel Falls is now available and I couldn’t be more excited! To celebrate, I’m hosting a launch party on my new Connie Mann – Author page on Facebook!  Stop by any time, any day throughout the month of March to chat with me, get a behind-the-scenes look at the novel writing process, win copies of Angel Falls, meet other fans, take quizzes, and more! Lots of fun stuff coming–and fun ways you can help me spread the word about the book, too! Would you stop by and “like” the page and “join” the launch event? That’s your ticket to all the fun. Thanks so much for celebrating with me!

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    The Conversation

  1. Calisa Rhose says:

    I have to do these things, or at least one of them, to stay refreshed. I also like to take a short nap. Congrats on Angel Falls’ release!

  2. Connie Mann says:

    Good for you, Calisa. I love naps. I call them “creative breaks” because they help reset my thoughts. 🙂
    Thanks for celebrating with me!

  3. Doris Neumann says:

    I am planning to get myself down to the beach……and just sit there for a half hour or so 🙂 thanks for the nudge.