In the last post we considered how play can heal our children through this difficult time in our lives. How does it also help our mental health when we are playful with the children? In play children can rearrange the world to make it less scary and it’s the same for us. Healing neurochemicals are activated in joyful play and strengthen attachments, vital to feeling safe in setting.
Take ‘Peek-a Boo’ which creates a momentary fear response in the child but this small degree of fear can help a child regulate their emotions. Children with chronic anxiety struggle with even mildly threatening situations because it leads to high degrees of fear generated by the person’s fear of losing control (Gray in Voice of Play).
We also get protective anti-stress effects from our playfulness. While we can’t let ourselves go in the setting, try to make some time for play.
Give yourself permission, be spontaneous, set aside your inhibitions and try something you haven’t done since you were a kid. Learn more here