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Work and Fun

“Without work it is impossible to have fun.” – St. Thomas Aquinas

We live in a culture that worships fun. Entertainment, pleasure, happiness, ease, relaxation, recreation … the list goes on. We want to have fun, and we would like to have it 24-7-365.

But is it possible to have fun without work? Thomas Aquinas thought not. He recognized that real relaxation happens on the heels of “a job well done.” Recreation is necessary when we have been depleted by the toil of daily living. Pleasure taken by itself surfeits and sours as we become bored and self-centered. Entertainment palls as we grow jaded and addicted to excitement.

Work is necessary for a sense of purpose and fulfillment. Work establishes a healthy daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly routine. Work makes relaxing “fun.”

It’s all a question of balance: we need both work and fun. Any time one or the other is overemphasized, our lives are thrown out of kilter.

* Do you tend to overemphasize either work or fun? Why?

* What is your attitude and approach toward work?

* What is your attitude and approach toward fun?

* If you feel that you are out of balance one way or the other, what can you do to come back to a healthy center point?

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