As children, we were virtually incapable of being bored. We took limitless risks, had an insatiable curiosity, and considered infinite possibilities.
I have a photo of myself taken at a park, in 1976. I know it was taken on a Sunday because I was wearing a dress and thick white tights under my royal blue coat. I was missing three of my front teeth and sporting my favorite Buster Brown shoes. I am grinning from ear to ear while perched on the monkey bars, hanging by a shoulder and a knee. My hair, a bit unkempt from the effort on display, blew in the cool breeze. The little girl in the photo had no idea what would unfold over the next decades. …And by her apparent happiness and confidence, she was not a bit concerned.
One of my favorite childhood pastimes, in addition to showing off at the park, was playing Store. Someone ran the cash register, managing a till of no more than $1.78. When necessary, we wrote checks on colored paper (and it was OK to spell forty with a “u”). Fine goods were marketed and sold. Hello Kitty stickers and a deck of cards featuring the Rocky Mountain National Park were top sellers. Receipts were generated and shelves restocked. And the game started all over again!
What made playing Store so much fun? It seems childlike work is characterized by:
Of course, being a kid can lead to a few injuries. Who hasn’t fallen from the monkey bars or crashed a bike? We know that skinned knees develop scars and broken bones heal stronger. Having a childlike perspective is refreshing; it’s about happiness and confidence. It reminds us that we are capable of ignoring worst-case, boredom, and hopelessness. All it takes is a bit of youthful courage, curiosity, and imagination! What would make your job more fun? Any advice from your younger self?
by Michelle Sugerman • Leading Synergies, LLC • © All Rights Reserved
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