All Work and No Play

Posted by Karen  •  Tuesday, 14 June 2011

How are things going in your family? Are you connecting with each other regluarly in a meaningful way? Are you kind and loving towards each other the majority of the time? Do you help each other out, offer assistance and walk alongside each other on this bumpy and rocky road we call life? Are you supportive and understanding? Do you laugh together more than you argue and resolve your conflicts with wisdom and thoughtfulness?

If not, don’t be surprised, neither are many, many other families in the world right now. Through my work with private clients as a Confidence and Performance Coach it has come to my awareness that many people living in this day and age experience deep levels of dissatisfaction and pain. Many people are living in almost silent desperation and could be easily diagnosed as depressed. People are often overly stressed and generally unhappy with the state of their lives and options for the future.

The question I would like to ask is “Why”? Why, when we have so many technological advances, medical advances and automated-comfort orientated lives, why is there so much sadness? There is no war in Australia, no extreme levels of poverty as experienced in 3rd world countries, there is a free education system and medical care. Why are people so unhappy?

Could it be that many families have forgotten to, laugh and enjoy each other or worse still, have forgotten how to communicate at all? Have we forgotten that happiness is not a distant future imagining that occurs only once you have won Lotto, but a deep and meaningful connection to other human beings and nature? Have we lost track of the understanding that kindness, compassion, love and joyfulness are not only possible within families in this chaotic and aggressive world we are living in but so important that they are necessary for the ultimate long term survival of our species?

Perhaps, we have become so hypnotised and indoctrinated by television, computers, and the countless electronic gadgets that surround us and accept emotional and spiritual pollution on a daily basis.

Perhaps we no longer really understand what is a balanced life? Maybe we have lost our ability to experience harmony and stillness. Do we really need electronics or alcohol or drugs to distract us from the dull ache of modern day existence?

Maybe it is time to turn off the electrical power and turn on the internal power that is gradually disappearing from the human race. Plug yourself back into life, back in to face to face interaction with the people who hold you to the highest standard of relationship, plug yourself back into the business of being a family.

Would you like a challenge? I would like you to manage for one day to not put on the television (at all), turn off all phones, computers and electronic devices as you walk in the door from work/school pick up etc. and find something else to do for the afternoon/evening. I would like you to light candles at dinner time, reduce the lighting to a comfortable level and have a nice meal as a family.

Then I would like each member of the family to answer 3 questions:

1. What do you love most about your family?

2. What would you change within your family?

3. How can your family support you better?

I would love to hear about your experiences. Please share your insights and thoughts in the comments box below.

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7 Responses to “All Work and No Play”

  1. annieoliveri says:

    Great time of year for connecting too! As a family we love camping and as it gets cooler of an evening, we bring out the brazier and sit around it in the garden. It’s a great time for connecting.

  2. Kama says:

    Great post Karen, such an important subject.

  3. Krishna says:

    By the time you have dad watching yet ANOTHER round of current affairs, mum on facebook, son on the Wii, and daughte on the DS….family fun time becomes few and far between! We make a family appointment for fun, even if it’s down to the local park, and we have a movie night with popcorn and lemonade. Great questions Karen, a wake up call xx

  4. Karen this is so important and I have to say lately I have been missing my family even though we are all in the same house. I guess it is about priorities isn’t it.

  5. Isn’t it hard these days Karen and so needed just because it is so hard to find the time to just sit back and connect and be a family. We do this at least twice a month, we take board games over to my sons house and all of us sit around the table with a few drinks and play, tell our stories and laugh and bond… we love it. Great reminder for all Karen thank you xx

  6. Sue Murphy says:

    Karen, This is a great post. So in line with how I feel and how our family works. If we all thought more like this, the world would be a much better place. Bless you for sharing this. Lets hope it helps to change many families out there to love more and enjoy every moment together. Our time together is so precious.
    Sue xxx

  7. Nadine Drake says:

    I would like to say – Outstandingly good thanks, There’s no doubt that your trusty readers could very well want even more reviews along these lines maintain the excellent hard work – Ciao x

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