Permission Granted: Do Something Just For Fun

When was the last time you did something just for fun? Not for money, not for social media, maybe not even to share at all. Just for you, just for fun?   

I think we have lost the ability to do almost anything without considering how to monetize it or spin, shape, or filter it for social media. I’ve been guilty of this, and many times, it resulted in pressure, disappointment, and self-doubt when all I really wanted was to have a little fun. 

Let me give you an example. I once came across an abandoned chair on the side of the road. I imagined doing a DIY treatment and making it look super cool. I didn’t stop there. My mind raced with thoughts of transforming lots of chairs and selling them. I even came up with a name for this entrepreneurial endeavor, “Take a Seat.” Now let me tell you, I am not a fan of the actual doing of DIY projects, and I’ve already tried my hand at business, and neither are for me. Why did I attempt to combine two things I don’t enjoy in the pursuit of admiration and the almighty dollar? I think it’s because I equated a purchase or social media accolades with success and self-worth.

“An Amazon rank doesn’t tell you whether someone read your book twice and loved it so much she passed it on to a friend. Instagram likes don’t tell you whether an image you made stuck with someone for a month. A stream count doesn’t equal an actual human being showing up to your live show and dancing.” Austin Kleon

I’m learning to ignore the numbers and surrender the need for others’ approval and what I’m finding is freedom: freedom from expectations, freedom from comparison, freedom from being inside the box, and freedom to try new things.

I write because I love it. I take pictures because I love it. I share my work to inspire or encourage others and make connections. I love the conversations I’m having with real people and I love what I’m discovering about writing and photography.

“The best work is done for the love of the craft.” Seth Haines

When I left my job as a speech-language pathologist, I felt I had to replace it with a new career and make at least a comparable income. I discovered making an income as an author is not an easy road to travel and not the business I want to pursue full-time (not right now, anyway). I want to focus on the joy writing brings me, allow new experiences to serve as a fertilizer for creativity and discover what Tsh Oxenrider describes as the “art of leisure.”

All that being said, making money from what you love to do is not a bad thing. It’s a great thing. I’m an author, and, yes, I love when someone purchases my book. I certainly don’t want to discourage you from turning your art and skills into a career. If that is your dream, I will cheer for you, “Go for it!!!” It’s part of the message in my book and I believe it.

My advice here is this: Don’t lose yourself in the numbers. Don’t allow income or social media to dictate your personal or artistic value. Allow time for your craft to be fun with no expectations. Carve out time to try new things. Grant yourself permission to do something just for fun. Grant yourself the freedom to play and learn and grow without pressures of rules and deadlines, breathe new life into your gifts and talents and prevent burnout.

So tell me….what are you doing, just for fun?

I’d love to hear your thoughts. Leave a comment or send me an email at hello@lorisanders.com

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For more on this topic, check out these links:

Podcast: A Drink with a Friend hosted by Tsh Oxenrider and Seth Haines, episode title, The Sheer Beauty of the Craft.

Book: Keep Going: 10 Ways To Stay Creative in Good Times And Bad by Austin Kleon

Until next time, be well.

Lori

FYI: lorisanders.com participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. When you click on a link and make a purchase, it allows me to earn a little commission without any cost to the reader. 

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