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In this episode of MarieTV, we do have some adult language. So if you do have little ones around, grab your headphones now.

Marie Forleo: Fun is an inside job, it is always within your control, it’s really a choice that you have to make every single day. 

Hey, it’s Marie Forleo, and welcome to another episode of MarieTV, the place to be to create a business and life you love. And we are back right now with a little Q&A Tuesday, and today’s question comes from Leona.

Leona Sampson: Hi Marie, my name is Leona Sampson, and I live in Dimona, which is in Israel. I’m 64 years old, and I live a deliberate and hopefully an examined life. I’m a mother and grandmother, and I truly embrace my role as a matriarch, however, your question made me realize that there has been one huge thing missing in my life. I’ve been a single mom and I’ve gone through some pretty difficult situations and circumstances, but I have very few regrets. Also, I thought your question made me realize I do have to correct one thing at once, otherwise I will regret it very much. I have to add a ton more fun into my life. So my question is this, how do I have a ton more fun in 2021, especially if I’m out of touch with that spontaneous and childlike side of myself?

Marie Forleo: Leona, awesome Q. Now before we get to how to have more fun in 2021, let’s talk about why it is so important. You know, there’s actually a growing body of research around fun, and there’s so much that we gain when we’re more silly and playful, and have more fun in our lives. So first of all, fun actually makes us smarter. Research shows that it improves our memory, our concentration, and our ability to actually be creative and get things done. Number two, when you’re having fun you tend to be a lot less stressed. And you guys know this, right? When you’re stressed you’re kind of cranky and miserable, plus stress depresses the immune system, which is not good given the situation we’re in right now. So having more fun really makes you healthier and stronger.

Most important though, Leona, and I think you know this intuitively, you mentioned it in your question about how this might be one of your biggest regrets if you don’t get it handled. Funny enough, one of our dear friends, Bronnie Ware, who’s been on the show, she wrote that incredible book, The Top Five Regrets of the Dying, right? So she learned in her research that actually one of the biggest regrets that people have when they’re about to take their last breath is this, “I wish I let myself be happier.” In other words, I wish I let myself be sillier, and have more fun, and just enjoy life more. So your question was a really good one, and now let’s talk about how to put it into action.

So the single most important thing that I want to communicate to you right now is that fun is an inside job, it is always within your control, it’s really a choice that you have to make every single day. Let me tell you about how I learned this. So when I was young my dad owned his own small business, and like most small business owners, I know many of you are in the audience right now, you know that sometimes you have really intense deadlines, right? You’ve got to do this incredible amount of work in this short little period, and it can be stressful. So there were times when I was growing up that my dad had to go to the office and there was a huge job he needed to get done. For my mom, myself, and my brother, rather than staying home and going, “Oh, we wish we could see dad,” what we would do is actually all go to the shop, he ran a printing company, and we would actually have work parties. We would do this sometimes on weeknights, mostly on weekends, and here’s what that looked like.

So my parents actually turned these work weekends into full-fledged work parties. We had a big boom box, you got to remember this was the eighties, my parents would get us pizzas. And throughout the whole weekend, while we were doing real work, we would take these dance breaks and party breaks where they would play such fun music, we would dance around the shop, we’d have a slice of pizza, we’d laugh, and then we’d go back to getting things done. So I was trained by the nature of who my parents are, and they’re amazing, God bless them, they’re still alive and they’re still so much fun. And I wish I had a video I could show you guys, my dad dancing in the aisles of the grocery store.

[Brief upbeat music]

Anyway, they really taught me the fact that you could bring the party to anything that you do, and I’ve adopted that for my own life. So I want to pass that along to you, when you’re thinking about how to have more fun in 2021, first, you know, it’s an inside job, it is always within your control, and it is a choice that you can make. Number two, you got to decide, if you’re going to bring the party, what elements are important to you? So for me, there is something I always bring, music, right? This is my UE Boom, I take it almost everywhere. I also do silly things like I have a reggae air horn. Some of you may have heard that before, some of you may be wildly annoyed by it, I don’t care. But music, dancing, movement, sometimes a reggae air horn, those are elements of my party.

Other times it involves something to drink, sometimes it’s a little vino, sometimes it’s a Pellegrino, sometimes it’s a cup of coffee. Just depends on what time of the day it is and what this body is desiring. You know, Josh and I actually bring the party all the time right now. So our little practice, and our relationship, we’ll ask each other, we’ll say, “What’s the party going to be tonight? And what time is it starting?” Sometimes it’s cocktails and puzzling at 6:30, other times it’s, “Okay get done with work by four because we’re going to do a hiking party, and then we’re going to do a cooking party.” We literally turn everything into a party. We actually have this other practice when we need to clean up after cooking, it’s called a cleaning party. We literally just go, “All right, time to get it on.” We put on music, we clean up everything, and we just have fun while we do it. So this doesn’t have to be complex, but it should be a daily practice.

One thing I appreciate you for mentioning, Leona, was the fact that you feel a little out of practice with this, out of being, you know, not super spontaneous, I haven’t been laughing a lot or having too much fun, and this is why I’m going to encourage you to make bringing the party a daily practice. So first, know it’s a choice, second, decide the elements that are important to you, and number three, tell yourself, “Today I’m going to start my party at 12 noon, I’m going to have a party while I’m making my lunch.” Or maybe you’re going to have a party making the bed, or maybe you’re going to wait and have your party at night, it’s about a dinner party and a movie. It really doesn’t matter, the point is when you decide and commit to having it, it’s going to make it that much more likely you’ll actually do it.

Leona, before we wrap this up, I just want to challenge you to really do this. You’re clearly a woman who’s gone through so many challenging things in your life, and now you’re at this stage where you really have to give yourself permission to enjoy it. And the reason why this is so important, the more fun you are having with your life, the more people are going to want to hang out with you. And yes, I know we’re in a global pandemic, but still, I’m always bringing the party so my friends are always wanting to say, “Hey, let’s get together on Zoom,” or FaceTiming me, or whatever. The more you bring the party, the stronger your relationships are, and just the more enjoyable life becomes. So Leona, thank you so much, keep us posted, tell us how you’re going to bring the party. And for everyone watching, use the hashtag #bringtheparty, tell me what the elements are, and you can even send me some videos of you partying it up and I’m sure it’d bring a smile to not only my face, but everyone else. Leona, that was my A to your Q, and I really hope it helps.

Now, I got a question for all of you. How are you feeling in the fun department these days? Are you a little fun-anemic? Do you need to turn up and bring the party every single day? I want to hear more about what your components are for a good party, and any great practices you have with your friends, or your family, or even yourself. Let us know in the comments below, now as always, the best conversations happen at the magical land of, so get your buns over there and leave a comment now. Now once you’re there be sure to subscribe to our email list and become an MF Insider. We send amazing emails every single Tuesday, they will make your inbox so happy, and I usually talk about things that I don’t necessarily get to talk about on the show. So until next time, stay on your game and keep going for your dreams, because the world really does need that very special gift that only you have. Thank you so much for watching, and I’ll catch you next time.

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