I am not entirely sure what the heck I was thinking when I chose this topic for this week’s blog hop, but I’m sure my intentions were good. Of course, my lack of participation in my own topics lately is alarming, so I decided that perhaps I needed to get back to blogging my own challenges even if they seem a bit on the challenging side! So, I’ve thought of this topic in many ways—and here are some of life’s lessons I’ve learned from the playground.
1) Take time to tie your shoes! A lot of precious time can be wasted when you are not ready to hit the playground. I’m sure it has happened to all of us at one time or another. We leave lunch, rushing toward the playground doors, anticipating that precious 20 minutes of time we have before we are called back into the classroom to exercise our minds once again. Just when we think we are going to be the first on the swings, teeter totter, monkey bars, etc., we trip and fall because we didn’t take thirty seconds on our way out to make sure our shoes were tied. Or maybe as you are running—your shoes flies off your foot because you simply didn’t tie it tight enough? Whatever the case—not being prepared for the playground of life will slow you down. The Lesson: When you can, be prepared.
2) Walk don’t run!! It is perfectly okay not to be the first one to hit the slides or the merry-go-round, every single day. While it is okay to be first every once in awhile, no one likes to see a kid who always HAS to be first and can’t handle it when he or she comes in second. Taking turns and showing you can be a team player will take you far in the big ball game of life. Sometimes if you let a few others go first and be the “guinea pigs” you can learn from their minor slip ups, adjust your game, and prove you can score batting fourth. Hey, maybe you’ll come off looking like a star. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t lead the pack once in awhile—but it is also good to sit back and observe. The Lesson: There is no “I” in “team” or “fun”.
3) Don’t be afraid to fall!! This one is a scary lesson to tackle. The playground is full of many obstacles and usually many kids. Inevitably you may fall down, get a few bumps and bruises, maybe even scrape a knee or an elbow. While those will heal given time, sometimes it takes a poke at our pride and perhaps we learn a little bit about humility. And yet the thought of falling down is pretty scary, kind of like failing. The thing is—we all fall down in the big game of life and sometimes we need to learn to how to bounce back and get out there and play again. We can’t learn anything if we don’t trip up every once in awhile. Learn to enjoy life with all of its ups and downs and successes and failures. The ones that get back in the game after a big fall are the ones that learn to have the most fun. The Lesson: Success comes to those who persevere.
4) Avoid the Bench: The playground has rules. And when we break those rules—we sometimes get sent to the “bench” or the “wall” to sit out the remainder of our play ground time, as punishment for not following the rules. It happens to most of us at one time or another. It simply is not fun to watch others having fun while we have to sit it out. Learning the rules of the playground is a good place to start. Learning how NOT to break those rules is even better. The same thing is true when you get to play in the Big Kid World, although the rules might not always be as clearly defined. Just know that it is up to you to figure out the rules and to decide if you want to follow them. The Lesson: Breaking the rules carries consequences.
5) Line Up at the Whistle: Remember the days when you were given an extra ten minutes on the playground—wasn’t it grand? It sure didn’t happen every day—but if you were lucky it happened once or twice a year. Then the whistle would blow—and you weren’t sure if you should be sad you were having to return to class or happy you finally got to go to the water fountain and take a break. Either way, it felt good to be out there—playing and having fun. When the playground of life happens—there will be far fewer times you’ll be able to be on the playground having fun and a lot more time spent working your life away—so enjoy each and every moment before that whistle blows. Because it will blow and you will have to line up when the whistle of life calls you back to reality. The Lesson: The first day back to work after any vacation is always the hardest.
What are some of the lessons you’ve learned from the playground?
This was written for Blog Hop #34 for The Writers’ Post. Come join us on Facebook to connect with other bloggers and join in our weekly blog hop!