Jeff Harry: Why You Need to Infuse More Play in Your Day
Episode #199 the Wingnut Social Podcast
Jeff Harry defines play as “Any joyful act where you are fully present in the moment. It has no purpose or result.” You are fully in love with what is actually happening. Your play moments are the best moments of your life when you feel most alive. You are in flow.
What is the work where you forget about time? How much of that work do you do on a given day? Jeff shares that identifying the work that you LOVE to do and increasing it by even just 1–2% has a ripple effect. Play can make you more productive, creative, and successful in the long run. It gives you momentum. How do you do that? Learn how in this episode of Wingnut Social!
Jeff Harry shows individuals and companies how to tap into their true selves to feel their happiest and most fulfilled—all through the medium of play. He has worked with Microsoft, Google, Southwest Airlines, the NFL, Adobe, Facebook, and Amazon, helping them learn how to infuse more play into their day.
What You’ll Hear On This Episode of Wingnut Social
- [3:36] Instagram has launched keyword search
- [6:19] All about Jeff Harry
- [8:29] Play can help you reach your zone of genius
- [10:20] Do you have to rewire your brain?
- [13:09] Why don’t adults play enough?
- [17:17] How to integrate play into business
- [21:31] What do you do with your employees?
- [25:38] Determine your team’s appreciation language
- [33:10] Does play factor into growing your business?
- [35:51] How to infuse more play in your day
- [50:06] The What Up Wingnut! Round
- [53:33] How to connect with Jeff Harry
- [56:33] Delegate outside of your zone of genius
- [1:00:56] Blooper Reel!
Connect with Jeff Harry
- Jeff’s Website: Rediscover Your Play
- Follow on Twitter
- Watch on YouTube
- Jeff’s TikTok
Resources & People Mentioned
- LuAnn Nigara
- BOOK: The Power Talk Friday Experts Vol. 2
- The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace
- Hubspot article on Employee Feedback
- BOOK: The Artist’s way
- BOOK: The Big Leap
- BOOK: Tuesdays with Morrie
Overcome the “shoulds” to get to you
Why is play such a lost art? Jeff points out that by the time you reach the age of 18, you will have heard the word “no” 148,000 times. On top of that, every adult in your life piles “shoulds” on you. Then you go to school where you’re told to raise your hand, ask for permission, etc. You hit your teens and you’re bombarded with social media. You get more information in a day than people in the 1950s got in one year. It tells you you’re not enough, you need to buy this, etc. All the answers are external.
Anytime you try to do anything that is “you”, you are considered mischievous or weird. You’re considered “too much” or “extra.” It’s such a rebellious act to simply be yourself. Ask yourself: What do I love to do? What makes me come alive? What makes me feel good about myself? Do something because you want to or because it brings you joy. It doesn’t have to have productive value, a sense, or a purpose. But you’re having fun. It puts you in a positive mindset and you’re priming your brain to look at every opportunity as play.
How do you integrate play into business? How do you encompass a play-oriented mindset in the workplace? How do you determine your team’s appreciation language? Jeff Harry takes a deep-dive into these topics—don’t miss it!
How to infuse more play in your day
Jeff walks through some exercises in this episode that HAVE to be shared. Where do you start? He notes that you cannot play until you’ve calmed yourself down. If you’re angry or in an anxiety-ridden state, you can’t play.
- You have to soothe yourself and calm yourself down first. Side note: make sure it’s a healthy form of calming yourself down. Jeff soothes himself by taking showers. Other people go on a walk or run or free-write.
- Get bored. Your best ideas come when you’re bored. Shut off social media and stop binge-watching Netflix. When you consume, you can’t create. It makes you feel like there’s nothing left in the world to create.
- It’s easier to create when you aren’t listening to everyone else. Practice listening to yourself. Start listening for that whisper, your inner curiosity. It will suggest something both exciting and really scary. Create a video. Start a side business. Start a podcast. Email someone. You have to strengthen the ability to live in your own intuition.
Three exercises to kickstart creativity
Another exercise? Get 3 people that know you really well and ask them these questions:
- What value do I bring to your life? We often don’t know what we do for people. Why are we friends? Why did you hire me?
- When have you seen me most alive? When have you seen me most engaged, most playful, most creative, most present? Most happy?
When you get 3–5 people to give you that information back and you look at it, you get so many answers and gems of wisdom.
You can also get your friends together and do what Jeff calls a “Tipsy Storm” over Zoom. You get tipsy on alcohol, chocolate, ice cream, whatever it is, and brainstorm together. Write down ideas. Go to bed, wake up, and return to that list. Circle the one that resonates the most with you and see where it takes you.
Bonus exercise: What did you do as a kid that brought you joy? How can that be tied to the work you love to do now? Take those “play” values from your childhood and find the work that you love to do most that encompass those values.
Jeff’s final challenge: Allow your emotions to fully envelop you. When you fully feel it, you can let it go. When you allow emotion in, you live a more fulfilling life. Let your grief and sadness out. People haven’t mourned 2020. Write down everything you wanted to accomplish in 2020 that you didn’t get to, mourn them, fold it up, fold it into an airplane, and let it go. What do you want to do with the last 23 days of 2020? What impact do I want to have?
Are you ready to stop “shoulding” on yourself so much? Are you ready to show up? Listen to the whole episode for more of Jeff’s amazing insight into positive psychology.
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