what is story and play work all about?
Story and play are tools we can use to lead more engaging, connective, and creative personal and professional lives. Play Work and related terms are first followed by Story Work.
- is composed of the personal or professional work one does with play, which may include formal and informal play and group and individual play. It may also include a personal play practice or the use of play as a tool for personal growth and connection.
- can be used as a tool to help us create, change and lead
- helps us tune into our own internal guidance system and connect to others to foster strong relationships. It helps us de-stress, relax, communicate, learn more easily and so much more!
- can be approached as a Play Practice. A play practice is the mindful application of play (formally or informally) in one’s personal or professional life on regular basis. It can involve one or more types of play.
- may include your personal Play Toolkit. A Play Toolkit is composed of the tools you love to play with and use in your play practice. It may be housed in your imagination or in a container(s) of some kind. It may include: Games (improv, basketball, a board game, etc.) imagination, curiosity, wonder, mud, humor, paints, a book, a camera, solo or group play … and the list goes on – whatever is healthy and playful and that you enjoy playing with.
- is about play, but what is play? Though I have a working definition, I feel it falls short. I prefer an idea I got after reading Stuart Brown’s book, Play: How it Shapes the Brain, Opens the Imagination, and Invigorates the Soul. Rather than a definition composed of words, what about one composed of pictures. Think back to the times when you or your children were playing or playful, and take a mental picture. Was there laughter? Were you or they alone or with others? Was there a game involved? Who made the rules? Were any of you pulling weeds? Or, doing something else entirely – for what play is for one, may be something entirely else for another.
- is composed of the personal or professional work one does with story(s). This includes components of oral storytelling: the teller(s), the story(s), the listeners, and the inner and outer voice and ear. It may also include a personal story practice or use of story as a tool for personal growth and connection.
- is a tool that can help us connect with more clarity, presence and understanding
- is about appreciating the story – your story, their story, the story. Storytelling enhances your ability to connect within and with others. It helps you gain perspective and direct your life with more ease and grace.
- can be approached as a story practice. A story practice is the application of story and storytelling in one’s personal or professional life.
- is about stories. A story can be captured in an image or it can be read with a well developed beginning, middle and end. For me story is about the human process of meaning making. The story – the meaning – may be full and round with lots of context, or it may leave one wondering. My background is as an oral storyteller and an artist.
Do you have more questions around story and play work? Please feel free to contact me here!