When Adults Unwillingly Unplug

I have a silly side.

It comes out quite easily with my kids and grandkids. There’s a sense of safety there that doesn’t make me uncomfortable if I’m foolish. Goofy. Un-adult.

They’ve all seen it before.

Getting around other adults with an agenda of playing is a different story.unnamed-3

Every year our group sets aside one morning meeting for the express purpose of playing team unnamed-2games. It’s us doing life differently. Breaking up the schedule of talks and input with laughter and silliness.

Another reason is the chance to get to know each other better in a light-hearted–or not so light-hearted–way.

I’m always surprised that people feel anxious about fun. When they see bags filled with objects meant to be incorporated into a skit. In ten minutes. Or blindfolds are pulled out and people are selected to put them on. With no knowledge of what’s coming. Or teams have to perform a cheer in front of a crowd–and there is no such thing as a really good cheer for adults.

Who am I kidding? None of those things sounds fun to me. Been there. Done that. Have worn the goofy hat.

When did having fun become complicated?

I think it’s when I discovered I had an image I thought I needed to manage.

What’s strange is people see me as being fun-loving and humorous. I often kid that I’m kept around for comic relief. I love to laugh and make others laugh.

On my terms.

unnamed-7Not when I think others may be laughing at me.

I think I think too much about what others may be thinking about me when they’re not really thinking like I’m thinking they’re thinking about me at all.

Don’t you think?

Managing an image is tedious work. You have to keep on top of how others perceive you. If you slip, you might destroy what’s taken time to build.

I met a lady the other day as I was visiting my friend. She’d gotten to know my friends as they’ve lived above her. With four young children. We talked of how hard it is to not make noise in an apartment. How you need to have respect for those living around you.

Neighbor lady commented that the family that had lived there previously had been rude. Their childrenunnamed-4 disrespectful.

Her perception.

Like me, they were followers of Jesus.

Trying to manage my image can keep me from focusing on living life with integrity, the who that I really am as well as Whose I am. If I spend so much time on how I appear to others, I may be missing out on engaging others with truth and grace.

“May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to You, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.”   Psalm 19:14

If I allow Jesus to guide my thoughts and words, I can better reflect Him to others. And really connect heart to heart. Letting others see the real me. Caring kindly for others in the process.

Bring on the fun. Abandon my image machinations.

I’m freeing me up to genuinely engage my goofy.









2 responses to “When Adults Unwillingly Unplug”

  1. Dayle you hit it for me especially today – because when you write, “Abandon my image machinations” – that’s exactly what I was doing, in a Costco parking lot!!! Blessings for writing!


    1. Whether it’s in Costco’s parking lot or as I walk into the office, I need to abandon that goofiness, too. Love you, Lo!


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