How to be the fun one
Three tips from science to add more fun into your life at any age
Do you have a lot of fun? Like, real fun?
Because it seems like a lot of the things we do in our busy, distracted lives, aren’t always really fun.
Scrolling through social media. Hanging out with friends or colleagues ‘just like’. Going to the same cafes, restaurants and bars…
There’s fun, and there’s F.U.N
If you ask someone, ‘when was the last time you truly had fun?’ something cool happnes.
They’ll light up, crack a huge smile, maybe let out a cheeky giggle
Those memories make us feel alive. They make the other stuff worth it.
We need more fun in our lives. And it’s not something that we have to wait for, something that happens to us.
Fun, according to science journalist Catherine Price, is something we can (and should) all have more of, to be healthier, happier and live more fulfilling lives.
Understand that you can be more fun
I was at my brother-in-law’s bucks party a couple of weekends ago, with a big group of guys who I mostly didn't know.
We were having a good time, playing pool, throwing darts.
And then this tiny blue Hyundai Getz pulled up. And three big guys got out, beers in hand, big grins on their mugs.
The mood completely changed — because they were fun dudes and they were ready to party.
Fun is something you learn
We all know people like this, and they’re awesome to be around.
But we tend to think that they’re born with it, that they must be extroverts, or that they just serendipitously attract great stuff.
Yet when Catherine Price asked a research group what made people fun, here’s what they said:
• They’re spontaneous.
• They’re not afraid to be silly.
• They’re not afraid to try new things and to be a beginner.
• They’re not afraid to be vulnerable.
• They’re appreciative of the small things.
• They find joy in being alive.
This stuff isn’t genetic. It’s all about attitude.
That means we can shift our mindset to attract more fun, and be more fun for the people around us.
We can all be the people who arrive at the party and gee everyone else up. And the best way to do that is to learn the ingredients of fun.
Unlock the secret ingredients of fun
To develop this mindset, we need to intentionally seek more of these three things:
Think about it. When we have fun, we:
- Feel connected to others, to ourselves, or to nature;
- Feel playful and adventurous, spontaneous or cheeky
- Are in flow, totally focused on the moment and thinking of nothing else.
You’ll probably find that you’re good at one or two of these, but not a third. That’s good — it gives you something to work on.
I can be playful and connect with others, but I have trouble getting into flow because I’m easily distracted (thanks ADHD brain!).
On the flip side, it’s easy to see why scrolling through your phone, or watching a movie by yourself at home, isn’t really the kind of fun that lights us up.
Both lack connection and playfulness, even if we are in a flow state.
Now that we understand that we can train ourselves to be more fun, and what the ingredients of fun are, we just need one more thing:
Send out fun signals
The best way to practice letting morefun into your life is to bring people along on the journey.
[you can] create more moments of everyday connection by sending out more play signal…i.e, let other creatures know that we are being playful and that our intentions are friendly, and to invite them to respond with playfulness, too.
Like a dog showing off one of their tricks, or a toddler taking you into their toy room, a little bit of effort is all it takes to communicate we’re up for a good time.
While it can be daunting at first, people are much more receptive to playfulness than you think — you just need to show that you’re willing to be vulnerable, warm and connected first.
And once they’re vibing on your wave length, you can elevate each other’s flow state — and then you’re really in for a good time.
We all deserve more fun, and we can all get by taking these three steps:
- Adopt a mindset and intention to be more fun
- Bring more flow, connection and playfulness into our lives and;
- Invite others to be fun with us.