Play at Work

If everyone had to write down a list of words that described their job, I don’t think “fun” would be at the top of many lists. Work is tough. Work is work. A job is full of challenges and responsibilities and most people compartmentalize fun to the hours after five o’clock.

Here’s the trick: your job SHOULD BE fun. But at some point, when you applied, or accepted an offer, something about this job must have been worthwhile for you to commit your time for it.

You may have lost sight of the “fun” behind the crushing weight of tasks, deadlines, cranky co-workers or clients.

I would never suggest you trivialize your job, or force yourself to treat issues that matter like they don’t. A flippant attitude isn’t the answer. But you can open yourself up to “playing” at work.

When we talk about improvisors performing, we refer to it as “playing.” On stage, you must open yourself up to the endless possibilities of what can happen from scene-to-scene or show-to-show. There is a sense of discovery and exploration.

That opportunity for you to flex creative muscles exists off stage too. By changing the way you approach work issues you can help make yourself love what you do.

“When we bring a sense of play into our work environment it opens up new pathways to solutions and allows for innovation,” according to Kristen Schier, university professor and one of PHIT Comedy’s corporate workshop facilitators. “Play exchanges convention and rigidity for novelty and flexibility. Play fosters creativity and adaptation all while inviting new possibilities… and let us not forget joy!

Our workshops can help people retrain how they think about work. We encourage you to look at your job not as an obligation you have to fulfill, but as a role for you to star in.

Here are a few ways you might be preventing yourself from having fun at work:

  1. You’re stuck in a creative rut: if you’ve become a slave to an implied system of doing your job, you’re missing out on new opportunities to approach work.
  2. You’re assuming “no”s – Sometimes our inclination to shoot down our own ideas prevents us from exploring opportunities we never realize.
  3. You’re focusing on the wrong things – If the amount you dread doing something is proportional to how long you put off doing it, you’re sustaining the worry. Spend your time focusing on the more engaging parts of your job.

To help you or your team rediscover fun at work, contact PHIT Comedy about our corporate workshops using applied improvisation today.