Everyone’s so cool and fun and incredible… they’ve got shades on, lil’ cute doggies, dope fashion senses, loud laughs, CEO Co-Founder tags under their LinkedIn names. Weeeeee. Obviously, people talk a good talk and front a good front. Looking like you have a fun life isn’t the same thing as actually having one. But what do you do for fun?
So right off the bat I want to emphasize that, in my humble opinion, no one can tell you what is or isn’t fun to you. You decide that.
If you’re looking to score some action with the guys or gals by being seen as fun, that’s a whole different story. Now we’re into the sales and marketing and personal branding area. But I think that’s still short of the true mark. You can be fun and still be real about it – you feel me? That way, you don’t have to front or overthink things. You’re just that person who’s got it made like that.
My favorite things to do for fun 10 years ago were: video games, wanking off, learning, reading fiction books, making music, plus a few other creative endeavors. Quite a few things were going on there. However, if you asked me, I didn’t feel proud of my lifestyle. What I did for fun seemed lame or shameful.
The question, what do you do for fun, mattered so much to me back then. It felt like it would reveal a part of who I was as a person. It would make me wonder ‘am I actually living an exciting life?’ And even when no one did ask the question, it still seemed important. This was because I wasn’t sure if I was living up to my highest potential. As a result, I didn’t feel PASSIONATE.
So I propose to you, the question of whether you’re living up to your full potential is probably the central reason why you are reading this feature right now. And it’s probably why the question ‘what do you do for fun’ feels affronting. When we fall short of our potential, it becomes hard to feel excited about life. [Read: How to let go of your past and be excited by your future]
In this feature, I’ll dig deep into how to turn up the levels on that amplifier. How to fire up that flamethrower. How to flick that light switch. How to – well I think you get the picture. Let’s go…
How to answer the question: what do you do for fun?
#1 Getting asked the question. What should you say when you get asked, what you do for fun? Pretty simple… I just start speaking without trying. I don’t take the question as some kind of test. It’s not a big deal. I don’t need to explain and defend what I’m into.
In the words of R&B singer 2lack on his song ‘High Rules’: ‘Rule number 1 no explaining.’ If you find your answer is full of securities, then you’ve been given the gift of feedback. Work out what is causing you not to be proud of your own day-to-day. [Read: Feeling stuck in life? How to change directions and live your dream]
#2 Are you in touch with your dark side? What’s more fun than entertaining passions of ego, pride, and your dark side? And what’s more imprisoning than always having to be polite and agreeable?
Being a pushover sucks and makes you naive. In a competitive unfair world, having some swagger about you makes you impressive and difficult to contend with. Embodying the drive to climb, to win, and to show your value allows you to truly have fun when playing the game of life. To be an active participant, not a pawn.
#3 Do you make yourself laugh a lot? This is at the heart of having fun I think. When I’ve had a bad week, or even few months, there’s a sucky momentum about it. In that negative momentum, I will probably give myself less permission to be amused, be silly, to laugh, or to playfully provoke, and this will keep me in a serious mindset towards life.
But when I find reasons to laugh, stupid silly reasons, it becomes an upward momentum. I like to: watch comedies, watch stand-ups, go out with friends somewhere fun, listen to a really cool audio book, etc. All of these things build up on each other. [Read: 13 happy things you need for a perfectly happy life]
#4 Are you hustling? Just having fun all the time becomes hedonism. It’s like going to an amusement park and never leaving. The ‘fun’ becomes completely empty. Slipping, when it comes to taking care of business and work, feels like a disaster waiting to happen.
However, being on game when it comes to work can be deeply fun just by itself. It’s satisfying to know that you’re making progress towards your goals. Anyone who says otherwise I think is lost. Try avoiding this one and you’ll have major boredom problems.
#5 Are you taking risks? Who has the most fun? The hero. The rock star. The rebel. Cool fun people I know do things that put themselves out there like:
-Doing public speaking
-Meeting new people
-Shipping personal work and projects
-Going out into the unknown
Fun and scary are like closely related cousins. So you’ll probably never be short of fun when you’re living close to your edge. [Read: How to be more outgoing and step out of your comfort zone]
#6 What’s your social life like? I have a friend who I hang out with every now and again. We have cool conversations about anything and everything. I have another friend who I meet sometimes weekly and go about the town with.
Most humans are very social creatures. So, if you don’t have people you hang out with, you will have a lot less fun. It’s the people who know and like you that provide the friendship aspect of a fun life – not strangers. Your close friends allow you to reveal parts of your nature that would otherwise go unnoticed and shrivel up.
#7 What are your hobbies/past-times? This is probably the question most people think of when asked what they do for fun. It doesn’t need to be something major, just something that suits your lifestyle and that you enjoy.
For an extrovert, this could be a group gathering. For busy parent of two, it could be reading a book in the evening when the kids are sleeping. If you have no outlet that you look forward to during your day and week then… that’s pretty lame.
Social event websites like Meetup.com allow you to meet people who are into sports/specific hobbies and connect over a game or event. Also, screw it if people think what you’re into is lame. If you’re into landscaping, own that! Make a YouTube channel about why it’s so cool. Go all out. [Read: How to be happy in life and life it to its fullest]
#8 What’s your personality like? My granduncle recently passed away *Rest In Peace*. When he was alive, he was a raging extrovert. From a young age, he found nothing more energizing than to have lots of conversations and to meet random people. He wasn’t usually happy to stay in one place. He had an uncanny ability to see the person behind the stranger at a moment’s notice.
But I’m more introverted than I am extroverted. I prefer intense extroversion in shorter bursts. If I tried to be like my granduncle, I’d be frustrated. I’m passionate about alone time, creativity, deep focus, and deep connection. I use this self-awareness to incorporate experiences into my lifestyle that suit me and get me excited about life.
#9 Do you have fun anywhere, any time? If an activity needs to be epic to feel like you’re having fun, then I wonder if you’re setting the bar too high. The most fun people I know could make any situation feel more fun simply by being in the same room as you.
Sometimes ‘having fun’ really is just a practice. It’s having a habit of amping yourself into a fun state of mind. For example, you see a colleague at work Monday morning and they say hello:
Colleague: ‘Hey good morning, did you have a good weekend?’
You: ‘Yes, I was amazing. Were you also amazing? Please say you were.’
You: ‘No I’m only kidding, LOL, yeah it was cool.’
No one can make you crank out an uncreative, predictable response, or take yourself too seriously. The more you let your sense of humor and playfulness out, the more you begin to understand what it actually is. And how to articulate it in an enjoyable way.
At first it may feel forced. But as long as you persistently keep searching for that true resonance, you will eventually find it. [Read: The rules of life – 22 secrets to never be unhappy again]
#10 Are you creative? You’ve probably heard people using the word creativity in the way that includes everyone. Problem is, if we apply a word to everyone equally, then those words lose their meaning. Clinical psychologist Jordon Peterson describes how, scientifically speaking, some people are highly creative, while most people aren’t creative AT ALL.
Words are used to discern. There are some people who don’t reach even close to the threshold of what might be considered creative relative to others who are.
Some people become truly miserable if they are not able to create: books, architectural designs, music, artwork, accessories, etc. So asking yourself this question tells you a lot about what fun might mean to you. Ask yourself what you’ve created in the last year and if it matters. [Read: Follow your dreams – All the amazing reasons why it’s totally worth it]
#11 Do you tell the truth when it’s inconvenient? Think of a comedian shocking his audience into laughter. Having fun often involves risk and bold honesty. This is especially the case when that truth is not convenient to tell.
For example, if you always feel the need to get on the good side of a person, you’ll eventually be dishonest with them. You’ll do this in order to not provoke them.
From my experience, once you go down the lane of deception, up becomes down, and down becomes sideways. From such a place, even when you try to sincerely have fun, it will feel forced.
[Read: 25 memorable life lessons to perfect your life]
If you don’t feel proud of how you’re living, then your passion will naturally die out. You’ll also lose connection to your unique interests, compulsions, and sense of what fun actually is. Take risks, tell the truth, have friends, follow your gut, and make sure you hustle like you’re supposed to! So what do you do for fun again?
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