play (five minute friday)

This week’s FMF post is a little late, but better late than never right? Finally got my laptop charger (praise the lord) so I’m back in action! Yesterday was my birthday so it was a bit too crazy to write.

 

This week’s word:

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I’m kinda glad I waited– I got a different idea for this word after thinking on it for a few days.


 

I have always loved to play games. As a kid, I loved board games and card games, or games on the computer (I’ve played on neopets since I was in elementary school– and i have no shame about still playing as a 25 year old, it’s my stress reliever!!)

As I’ve gotten older, it’s been less board and card games and more games that make me think critically or games where I have to use my brain creatively.

I’ve never been a get-to-know you game person or team bonding games fan– if you’re going to get to know me, I’d rather be through an intimate conversation than 3 truths and a lie. Youth group games or sports-like competition games are not my style– I am competitive, but it’s more of the trivia/brain game type.

My favorite game to play in the whole wide world? Bananagrams!

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This is what it looks like in the bag. Isn’t it cute?

If you don’t know it, please go here now. I was introduced to it my sophomore year of college at a campus ministry retreat– I played for nearly 4 hours of free time that weekend, and then promptly came home and purchased the gamdownloade for myself!

The game is a word game, similar to a speed scrabble competition. It’s so fun and incredibly fast paced(depending on how many people are playing), and it can get wickedly tricky depending on how many letters you have at a given time. But it is so. much. fun. Especially if you’re a think-on-your-feet, word nerd, dictionary of a person like myself.

It is played at nearly every game night me and my friends have had. I’ve played for countless hours in my college dorm lobby with so many friends (and met new people who would ask to come play with us when I played with friends in the lobby!).  I now own two different versions of the game (the regular and party versions).

Because of the critical thinking skills required to play, bananagrams has surprisingly become a tool in my mental health journey–when I am overwhelmed with anxiety or in the midst of a panic attack, i grab my bananagrams and play by myself, focusing on the words I can make with the letters I grab from the bag or just building words. It gives me something to focus on instead of the looming anxiety battle in my brain. It gives my brain another place to divert my thoughts, and it gives me some control back. Bananagrams has traveled with me almost everywhere in years’ past  (as far as Mexico!) as an easy way to combat panic, and has become more than a game I merely play for fun– it is an invaluable tool and gift to my life, as silly as that sounds.


Last night was my birthday party at a friends house. 4 of my friends had canceled on me before I even made it there, and I was overall in a blah mood, not really wanting to celebrate. The transition from my internship to home has been pretty brutal mentally, so I wasn’t really feeling much like myself. When I walked into my friend Jared’s house, I saw the little yellow banana of bananagrams fame on his kitchen table and laughed, visibly happy at the sight.

“I thought we could maybe play some bananagrams tonight!” Jared said excitedly.

My heart leaped with joy, i was plain giddy. It was the perfect way to end my birthday party– even if I lost twice. (dangit). It really turned my mindset around.

I’m super grateful for friends that know me and my game-loving self well– and that are always willing to stop being adults for awhile and play.

 

(This took longer than 5 minutes, whoops).

 

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my board first round (i ALMOST won, but my friend rebecca beat me by about 30 seconds!)
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4 thoughts on “play (five minute friday)

  1. Tara

    Love this snapshot into your joys friend! I’m so glad your friends know you so well. It makes such a huge difference, doesn’t it? I’m in the 5 spot this week!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Jordan – I’m right next to you in the FMF linkup (#80) which means I was even later than you linking up. 😉 And I’m really glad I read your post because yours is so similar to mine: I wrote about a word game too: one my daughter and I invented when she was little and that we still play ALL THE TIME even though she is almost 19.

    My daughter and I love playing Bananagrams as well. It’s really interesting what you said about the game being a good anxiety-reliever. I find it that way too: the perfect combination of competitive and extremely relaxing. Thanks for writing, and it’s great to be next-door neighbours with another word nerd.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I enjoy Bananagrams too, though some of the people I usually play with are super-competitive and I don’t stand a chance! I’m glad you were able to play it as part of your birthday party and that you’ve found it a good way to ward off anxiety too. Happy belated birthday! Visiting from FMF#29.

    Liked by 1 person

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