The following is summarized from the NPR article “How to have real fun — even when life’s got you down” which can be read in full at https://www.npr.org/2022/02/22/1082374139/how-to-have-fun-and-why-you-should
Catherine Price, author of “The Power of Fun: How to Feel Alive Again,” defines fun as a time when you are able to embody a mix of three things: playfulness, connection and flow.
Playfulness – “I don’t mean you have to play a game. You don’t have to play make-believe, you have to do charades,” says Price. Playfulness is when you embrace a spirit of lightheartedness and freedom. It means letting go of the idea that you have to be perfect or to achieve something.
Connection – You feel a sense of connection with the activity that you’re doing. You feel a sense of connection with your physical body. Or, most likely, you feel a sense of connection with another person or group of people through a shared experience.
Flow – You know that thing where you’re totally immersed in something and can even lose track of time? That.
Price also offers a handy acronym to help bring more fun in your days: SPARK
S — make Space for fun! Put your phone down, or even set aside some time on your calendar to make sure you are really dedicating yourself to looking for fun.
P — Pursue passions. “You don’t need to put pressure on yourself and think ‘I’m going to become a professional snowboarder,'” Price says. Set the bar low! Look for things that interest you and let those guide you.
A — A is for attracting fun, which means having an open mind about when and where fun might appear. Price recommends an improv-style “yes, and” approach to having fun, where you look for fun as well as jump into other folks’ fun.
R — Rebellion! Price found in her research that a little bit of gentle rebellion was a good way to make fun happen. So, jump in a pool with your clothes on! Go roller skating in the middle of the night! Stepping out of what is expected of you can be a great way to seek out fun moments.
K — Keep at it! Like any new practice, the only way to really incorporate it into your life is to try it many times. So don’t give up if basket weaving doesn’t work for you — maybe it’ll be guitar or making zines or working in the community garden that becomes your next fun magnet!