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Let Down Your Covid Armor and Turn Up the Fun

Playfulness is a doorway to passion and intimacy.

Here we are, entering 2022 with covid and its pain, disappointments, and uncertainty. 

The repeated experience of disappointment and uncertainty has a larger effect on us than just souring our mood. Expectations of negative experiences and the uncertainty that problems are inevitable can cause us to psychologically brace for them by armoring ourselves for the next wave of disappointment. The armoring causes…

  • muscular tension
  • dulling of the senses
  • less physical energy
  • lack of creativity
  • reduced sexual desire 
  • lessened capacity for pleasure. 

If you are experiencing this, you are not alone! 

The question is, what can you do about it?  

Fortunately, there is an antidote to soften the armor and uptightness built up from all the uncertainty and disappointment: FUN! And a key component of having fun is being playful. Turns out, having fun is a coping mechanism in the face of stress and disappointment. 

Here’s why: when people are having actual fun, so journalist Catherine Price claims, “they report feeling focused and present, free from anxiety and self-criticism. They laugh and feel connected, both to other people and to their authentic selves.”*  

Sounds like fun, doesn’t it?  

Being playful and having fun helps soften that heavy armor we have built up due to the psychological effects of Covid.  And, being playful can also be linked to maintaining well-functioning romantic relationships.**

Playfulness can bring feelings of comfort, relaxation, and safety, which, interestingly – and not surprisingly – are present when people feel intimate, passionate, and sexual.

If you are sensing that your covid “armor” is weighing down your mind, mood, and body right now, or if your love life has grown stiff and less than pleasurable in the last few months, then maybe the thing to do is bring in more of a sense of fun and playfulness to make your intimate time together more pleasurable.

Read “3 Easy Ways to Add Play to Your Relationships” next for tips on how you can easily infuse more fun into your romantic relationships.

*Price, C. (2021, December 23). Why we all need to have more fun. The New York Times. Link.
**Proyer, R. T., Brauer, K., Wolf, A. & Chick, G. (2018). Individual Differences in Playfulness and Love Styles in Heterosexual Relationships. American Journal of Play, 10 (3), 265-289. Link.

Post Author: Julie Schmit