SOCIAL MEDIA

05 November 2014

What is Fun?

In a moment of airport-inspired boredom I splurged and bought the book that seemingly everyone had already read: The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin. One question the author asked herself in the book intrigued me so much that I've since gone around asking it to all sorts of people. The question is this:

To you--what is fun? What do you like to do for the sheer pleasure of it? What would you choose to do in your spare time if there were no such thing as practical matters or other people's desires to take into consideration?

My family added one more consideration: Are there things you like to do for fun with people, and different things you like to do for fun when you're alone?

 Exploring Oahu--for me, this was bliss since I had a partner-in-crime to accompany me, but it isn't the sort of thing I'd do on my own for the fun of it.

My answer came pretty quickly--what I do by myself for the pure fun of it is write. (I'm being Captain Obvious here) I can stay home all day and write whatever comes to mind and consider it a highly amusing day, even if no one else ever sees or appreciates whatever it is that I happened to write.

When I am with other people, however, what I find most fun is to go out to new places, to explore and go on adventures. I don't actually like exploring all that much when I'm alone--I can go to new places alone, but when I'm by myself I'm too focused on trying to memorize what my surroundings look like so that I don't get lost and figuring out where to go next to truly have fun. When I'm with others, though, I don't feel like I have to be responsible for every decision that has to be made so I can relax and enjoy the adventure.

Asking my family this question was quite interesting, as the most social among them declared, "Basically nothing that I do on my own is actually fun", while the homebodies said, "Pretty much nothing that forces me to be around other people is fun." I guess I'm somewhere in the middle between those two extremes, as I have fun both with people and without, just in different ways.

Some who I've asked have mentioned really specific activities in which they love to do, purely for the fun of it: making jigsaw puzzles or boogie boarding. Others had more of general categories: exploring nature or going to the beach. And some couldn't think of any answer to the question at all!

What about you? What do you do for the fun of it? And is there a difference between what is fun to do on your own, and what is most fun to do with other people?

25 comments :

  1. I also love to write & travel to new places! I love to shop but only with people & I love to run but only by myself :) Loved the idea behind this post. Very creative :)

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  2. Like you, I love to write and travel to new places. I also love my gym time and cooking. All fun for fun's sake. :-)

    Kelly
    www.alovelylifeindeed.com

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  3. I like to read and write and blog when I'm on my own. With other people I prefer eating good food and playing games!

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  4. Fun on my own is anything creative, could be cooking, baking, crafting, designing, you name it. Fun with someone else is travel, discovering something new, trying a new sport etc. I think those kind of things are best shared so you have someone to talk to about it that understands.

    bisous
    Suzanne

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  5. Cool topic! For fun, I like to move. It can be walking, running, hiking, anything really, plus 3 cheers for exploring. I also love to write, and play music. Usually I do all of my active stuff with friends and family and writing and playing piano is more of a solo thing. However, I have fun doing all of the above by myself or with others.

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  6. i don't say this to very many people, but i think we could hang out pretty much nonstop. i mean, we could take 'personal time' breaks to do our own reading/writing/photography, and then we could join back up for adventures & explorations :) i loved the happiness project. while i didn't really enjoy the author herself, i liked the questions she raise about life/happiness/habits/etc. excited to see what else intrigues you!

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  7. I like to sew and cook when I'm on my own. I also love to run either on my own or with other people, depending on my mood. When I'm with other people I like to watch movies, hang out, stay up late talking and laughing, and go on adventures. My roommates are great people to do things with. Sometimes we go on spontaneous hiking adventures for no reason at all and it is awesome.

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  8. If I had some time I could do literally anything I wanted, I'd go walk around a city, snapping photos. Then I'd find a coffee shop and find a cozy chair and read for hours. Love it!

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  9. I think baking would be pretty close to the top! But it's hard to decide actually...

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  10. I think it definitely varies by whether I'm alone or with someone else. I'm like you, more of a homebody on my own...I think fun is making something, being creative. But with others I enjoy going places, or hosting people in our home for games or something like that. I'm also always perfectly content just sitting somewhere chatting with friends or family, we don't really have to be doing anything for me to think that is fun! That shoreline is gorgeous!

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  11. Hanauma Bay is so amazing. :)

    I find a lot of things to be fun! Writing; going to museums, theaters, historical landmarks; hiking, snorkeling, and paddle boarding; sleeping (haha...I have an active dream life); enjoying a coffee while people-watching; playing board games or crafting with my family; cooking...

    This list could go on and on.

    I am perfectly content doing these things with someone or by myself, but I *do* like to take myself on dates often to feel centered and whole.

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  12. This is a really interesting question. I would say working on a craft is what I love doing alone, while exploring a new place is what I love doing with people. I think it's nice to have a mix of those things:)

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  13. Hands down, if time and money were no limitation, I would travel with my husband, and then spend lots of time alone crocheting. Those are my two favorite things. I'm not really a hang-out-with-others type of person. I'm a HUGE introvert, and being around groups of people wears me out in about 30 minutes.

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  14. That is interesting to think about. I'm similar in that with people fun is exploring or doing new things. Alone fun is scrap booking or crafting or drawing or laying on my sofa and watching tv under blankets haha

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  15. I really loved that book.so much to think about. I love running, of course :) with people, I like traveling too. Although a can have fun with people just hanging out and laughing. I don't need to be in a special location.

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  16. This has totally stumped me. I haven't had fun for so long, I've forgotten what it is. Even things I previously considered 'fun' (running, reading, baking, writing, scrapbooking) have been dulled, had the shine taken off of them. I'm definitely going to be pondering this one at a deep level. [Thank you]

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  17. This is such a powerfully thought provoking question. One's blink answer runs to answers like "birthday parties" and "Christmas morning", which certainly can be, but I believe the author (I haven't read that book yet myself) as well as you here, dear gal, are aiming for something deeper and more personal. To me fun is when my worries are overshadowed by the degree of happiness I feel. When I talk long walks on crisp autumn days and lose myself in the serenity of nature. It's being surprised - in a good way, and bringing joy to others. Vintage hunting, blogging and selling. It's things that remind me of the best parts of my youth and those that are likely to better my tomorrows alike.

    ♥ Jessica

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  18. Interesting topic and great post, Rachel! For me the answer is yes and no. I enjoy chess whether alone (playing online or studying it) or playing it with my family, or at a club or tournament. For alone fun I enjoy writing, reading, watching Youtube, and photography. With people it's fun to talk, hike, play volleyball, or a game of take-two scrabble.

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  19. In my spare time it's definitely reading, writing or travelling. I also love designing but as it's now my job, I get enough enjoyment out of that to last me a lifetime ;).

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  20. Wow...this is a thought provoking post! ;) I think for me blogging, performing and baking are the things I consider the most "fun". They are more than just hobbies...they are like passions! I think there are definitely activities that are just plain boring alone. I personally don't really enjoy watching movies alone or playing "one person" games.

    Ashley B.
    Like No Other Fashion
    www.likenootherfashion.blogspot.com

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  21. I find anything that's new and intriguing but not life threatening fun. Lol :) I love to sleep - I love lying around and being a bum; while I get to do it often not enough for my taste. I also love my blog and writing, makes me happy; music makes me very happy, dancing; eating and cooking plus baking - happiness.. Neuroscience/Psychology and learning make me very happy too. :) Have a great one Rachel! -Iva

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  22. Traveling would be pretty close to the top of my list but I've never traveled alone so I'm gonna say that's with someone. If it's just me, I love to plan parties!

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  23. Ooo I like this. Traveling and exploring are two things I would want to do with someone else, preferably James. Thought I've travelled alone and enjoyed that too. Reading, writing, playing piano, and blasting music and dancing are all things I love to do alone :)

    What did you think about that book? I wasn't sure if it was worth the read or not.

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  24. I read for fun and I would love to travel for fun (either with or without others)

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  25. I haven't read the book, so thanks for sharing a bit from it. I'm with the ones who say they don't remember what is fun. I struggle with this. I do like to color in coloring books with good crayons. I also like to blow bubbles. I'm tired all the time, so simple is what I'm looking for. But I'm going to spend more time asking myself the questions. I used to have fun - now, if I can just remember how.

    Happy Sharefest! I hope you have a lovely weekend.

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