The first day of work and return to studies after Christmas separates you from the freedom of your home, it thrusts you back into the artificial environment (compared to your authentic one). For two weeks, you have risen when you wished, read in bed in the morning and late into the night, lounged in your favourite chair watching Season 6 of ‘Downton Abbey’, sizzled in sunshine, showered after noon… and enjoyed all that leftover chocolate (if there is any after that last chocolate fix!).

The first day back to the books and back to work can be a shock. No, not can be – IS.

I heard others like me, who returned to work on Tuesday 5th, say that they had planned to take it slow, to give themselves time to transition back into the… well, let’s call it what it is – the rat race.

But does the fun have to end?

Here’s a simple idea for some fun that requires few resources and doesn’t demand a major amount of time.

Over this past holiday break, each evening my partner and I sat outside with a beer and colours. We coloured Christmas pictures. (They were all of the Grinch, which fits our opposition to the consumer Christmas the holiday has become.) Our grinch green and brown pencils did get ground down all right.

At tables near ours, others talked of their work: the hassles, people clashes, the their not looking forward to getting back to ‘it’. We quietly coloured and sharpened, shared the black pencil without a fight… it was calming.  We left our work behind and enjoyed these moments.

Fortunately at my workplace, we often have themed colouring with pencils sitting out on our chill-out table. Sometimes people spend a few minutes colouring in during the day – at lunch or over a coffee. They usually fall into a meditative state and come out with a contented aura wafting around them.

We put the completed pictures up around the office during holiday times: Christmas, Easter, Halloween, 4th of July – and for this coming February, we’ve started Valentine’s Day colouring.

Unless you’ve been under a rock this past year, you’ve no doubt heard of the “new” adult colouring fad. However, many of you may have been colouring all along; the fad simply gives those who haven’t been colouring the permission to do what is often seen as a child’s occupation.

If you’re wondering whether or not to invest in this fad, which can be expensive, download images and buy yourself a cheap little packet of colours – or nip your kids’ (don’t tell them I told you that!).

Here are some colouring page sites to get you started – the words I googled to get them are the link names:

And OMG: Colour me Good Benedict Cumberbatch!

For even MORE fun – test your fun level: Could you be having more fun?
I took the test and was surprised that the summary called me a natural optimist. I took that with a grain of salt – I’m a confirmed skeptic (FYI, Ref. The skeptic’s dictionary).

According to Louise Taylor’s blog, Why having fun at work is good for you, International have fun at work day is 29 Jan and 1 Apr. But don’t wait until then!

(Note the section ‘Do we play enough?’ in my similar blog:  Let your mind alone.)

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