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Prep: Play

As a reminder, the Prep section of the e>v guide takes you through exercises on how to rate your current "Level of Aliveness" across 7 different Life Areas: Purpose, Spirit, Health, Play, Relationships, Expression, and Stuff. Then, the guide asks questions about what "baggage" you may be holding on to in that area and, of course, what that it might look like baggage-free. I'll dig into a few of these concepts to give you a glimpse into how it all works. Hopefully you'll find some inspiration to explore on your next adventure! Let's go!

My new favorite quote of all time comes from Kurt Vonnegut.

He said: "We are here on Earth to fart around, and don't let anybody tell you different."

This quote – in combo with the image above of my husband and partner-in-exploration, Daniel – is brilliant. Because, that shot up there? That was last weekend ... when we blissfully "farted around" on a Saturday afternoon here in Indonesia.

Exploring nature, sweating in the heat, stopping to marvel at trees and water and flowers, saying hello to other explorers on the path. And then farting around until we got to the next place. 

This is my new favorite thing about travel. Those vacation days when you can just be in the moment. No tour to catch or appointment to meet or place to be. True, in-the-moment "fartitude." 

I explore this thought as my e>v guide Prep section recently took me into the realm of "Play." Or, as the guide asked me: "Where do you find laughter and joy? What eases tension, releases stress, introduces calm and balance? What's your baggage around what 'play' means to you?"

In response to these questions, I chose (was gifted?) the "fart around" quote above as a direct contrast to what my default reaction has been for years. For, in the past, I have been a gal of action.

Even on vacation, I would need a plan, a structure, an answer to "yeah, but, what are we going to do today?" before I'd be able to relax. I would say, "I work well within limits." And I started to believe it.

Exploring this baggage with e>v as my guide – especially under the spotlight of Kurt's quote, with Daniel by my side – makes me rethink my way of being, of exploring, of playing ... not only while traveling, but every day.

Case in point: Over a cold, post-hike Bintang Daniel showed me one of the daily-inspiration-emails he subscribes to from "Notes From the Universe." It said...

"The thing that's totally different between children and adults? Children have the ability to spontaneously use their imagination to forget what's bothering them and be inspired by every pony, feather, or bug that crosses their path."

This is what I'm talkin' about. This is Play. This is being present, in the moment, allowing your mind to detach from stress and, more, allowing your mind to imagine something new.

This is experiencing the world without a plan, without structure.

This is farting around. 

- Elissa




  • Elissa, I loved this post. My father was always telling his 5 kids to stop, “farting around.” This really only applied to when we were getting him a tool or in the middle of some task, for he was the Master of “farting around.” He turned it into an art form. We spent, what seemed to be, a life time of weekends running one errand and stretching it into searches for the best duck ponds to hunt, driving lessons on gravel roads, learning about history while exploring abandoned farmsteads, picking chokecherries, and a myriad other adventures while driving home via the “heartland of America route.”
    My husband and I have both inherited the “farting around” gene, and we eagerly share it with our kids. For those of us who are limited to vacations closer to home base and with tighter budgets, this allows the next generation to indulge in all things “fart-worthy”… stopping at the historical markers along side the roads and the state parks, seeing what farm house great,great grandparents built and lived in, and learning why small town diners are always a better meal than “fast food.”
    In a world full of over-scheduled adults and children, I think more people would be more physically and emotionally healthy if we all returned to a life that made time for unscheduled “farting around.” If you want to keep the fart-metaphor going, go where ever the wind blows…

    Paula Crawford-Anderson
  • Farting around right now… farting… oh no… enjoying life with you!!!


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