Be Playful

Aspects of Playfulness: Deliberate Delight

Posted on: 30 April 2008

woohoo-for-fall
Photo by T. Keller.

Have you ever met a person who truly delighted in the world around them? Their delight transforms the world, allowing you to see things afresh, in ways unknown to you before. In this post, I share how you can make the deliberate choice to be abundant with delight.

In my life, the people that have most transformed me – who have shaped the direction of my life and inspired me to dream – are those who delight in the world. It is a simple delight, noticing everyday surprises and moments of grace that most of us ignore, or are too busy or distracted to see.

This aspect of playfulness is deliberate delight because I think delighting in the world is a chosen attitude. Some days it falls on you as a gift when you wake up, sometimes it arrives when in the presence of other people. Most days you will find that delight is not given directly, but you can choose to find it, take it, and share it.

There are three key features of deliberate delight. They are delighting in yourself, delighting in others, and delighting in everyday things.

Delighting in yourself

People who overflow with delight know the beautiful places in their own soul. There is pain there too – they may have travelled to the depths of their being to find the jewels that they delight in now. Because they know themselves, they are able to be real, to be who they truly are, and to share that in delight.

Jesus said, ‘Love other people as you love yourself’. In saying this, he was showing how important it is to know our own value if we are to see the true value in other people.

For those abundant with delight, being comfortable in themselves allows them to be comfortable around others, to share their delight and ripple it outwards through the world.

Delighting in others

beautiful-children
Photo by babasteve.

At the core of deliberate delight is the ability to see the beauty in everyone you meet, and to share what you can see.

Have you ever given a sincere compliment to someone, and noticed how their face came to life, and their body posture moved into a new confidence? To be able to give others this lightness of being is a real gift.

If you look into someone’s eyes, anyone’s eyes, even for a moment, you can see glimpses of their heart, of who they are at the core of their being. To share the truth of what you see can change a person forever.

The times that I feel most alive are when other people delight in me. When I feel that people truly like me, I am able to become more like myself.

James Alison says that when we become aware that someone likes us:

‘we relax and are happy to be who we are in the eyes of the other. And curiously, as we relax, we find that we are much more than we thought we were.’

Delighting in everyday things

feeding-the-birds
Photo by soylentgreen23.

Having focus is often useful. Without focus we would become constantly distracted, flittering from one thing to the next, never settling. Focus allows us to move towards our dreams, into the delightful places that we long to be.

However, focus can also be negative. With too much focus, we can miss out on so much that is beautiful and delightful. The familiar becomes too familiar, and we forget how wonderful life is.

Today, take a moment to notice the taste of the food as your eat, the eyes of your lover as you tell them about your day, the sound of your feet as you walk around the house, the feel of the air filling your lungs as you go out to work.

Delight in all these things.

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16 Responses to "Aspects of Playfulness: Deliberate Delight"

[…] Aspects of Playfulness: Dedicated Delight- the first article in my Aspects of Playfulness series. […]

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What a beautifully written post, with such a great message.

Complimenting others (sincerely) has such great power. Not knowing what’s going on in someone’s life, a simple compliments can turn their whole day around. Too often people get so wrapped up in their own life/problems they forget about others.

My sister works for a large company and she makes it her mission to “hand out” three compliments a day. It’s no wonder people seek her out.

Working in a home office I don’t see too many people, but when I do get sales calls, I will listen to the sales pitch and politely let them know I’m not interested. I’ve done telemarketing and know what it’s like to have the other party be extremely rude.

Barbara Swafford’s last blog post..Blogging – Year One – Lesson Eleven

Barbara,

I completely agree – complimenting is so important, especially in a work environment where things can get stressful.

I remember when I used to work in retail saying a simple ‘thank you’ to other staff made such a difference – it’s not only polite, but it lets people know that they are important to you, that you couldn’t be where you are without them.

On the flip side, it’s amazing how quickly rudeness can grind you down. I find that one rude comment or insult, given to me at the wrong time, can ruin my day.

Thank you for your comment 🙂

There are a lot of people, myself included, that believe that we are all a part of ‘the infinite creator’ and each person you see is a reflection of yourself. If a person makes you angry then it is a clue to adjust yourself and if a person makes you happy then you have happiness inside you.

Nice post and I’ll dig deeper into you blog for more inspiration!

Darren Daz Cox’s last blog post..If you can draw a horse then you can draw anything!

Darren,

Thank you for visiting. I agree that there is ‘that of God’ in all people – and I think knowing that has a big influence on social interations.

I do think there are times when anger is justified and is cannot just be blamed on a person’s inner state. Albert @ The Urban Monk blog has written a great series of posts on this recently.

Let me know what you think!

David

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David, what a beautiful post!

It really touched me … having spent time hanging out with some truly lovely folk on Photography Less Ordinary, who are the epitome of delightful (brimming over with delight!) I have found myself noticing and delighting in so much more of life.

I really enjoyed this post, I love the images you’ve used, you have said so many interesting things here … and although I could do with a little more focus in my life right now, you have just put a lovely positive spin on it!

A pleasure to read, David, thank you!

:o)

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