“Play starts with a good sense of humor.” – @FunnyScott@SFMeetings@MPI#IMEX14 YES! We totally agree.
If you’ve been following us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram over the last couple of days, you’ve likely noticed that we’re in Las Vegas!
We are here all week attending the 2014 IMEX America! IMEX America is an annual conference for event professionals in the meeting planning industry. This year, it is being held at the Sands Expo and Convention Center in sunny Las Vegas, Nevada. We’re excited to share some of the details of the event and what we’ve learned so far. Here are a few of the highlights.
Event Professionals Steve Gross and Scott Friedman explain how we can incorporate spontaneous play into our lives
Day 1 consisted of two great talks about cultivating playfulness and embracing opportunities for celebration. The first was a keynote address by Steve Gross from the Life is Good t-shirt company. Steve discussed the importance of making time for play, commenting that many people do not value it as much as they should. “Playfulness is the Rodney Dangerfield of traits,” he quipped. “It can’t get no respect.” But as he pointed out several times throughout his hour-long talk, people have to devote time to letting loose and recapturing their childlike sense of wonder. “We must cultivate a practice of play,” he explains, because playfulness increases life quality and “the quality of our lives is in direct proportion to the quality of our relationships.”
He also discussed how playing and having fun makes people happier, citing several studies on the topic, one of which found that people who smile more often live longer. This is important, Steve noted, because, “We can’t help brighten someone else’s life if our light is dim.”
Steve Gross was a brilliant first keynote address speaker, making jokes, high fiving and “fist bumping” the crowd, and regularly pausing his talk to engage the audience, ask questions and elicit feedback. It was clear to all those that watched him that he was living his message. What a fun and truly playful person!
The last talk of the day was another humorous and witty presentation on the importance of play and celebration, which was given by author and motivational humorist Scott Friedman. His hour and a half educational session had a top notch power presentation, which featured clever short video clips, funny photos and inspiring quotes. Echoing Steve’s earlier thoughts on the subject, Scott stated that people frequently do not value play and “celebration”. In fact, he referenced a study that spanned 35 countries that found that 9/10 people claim they do not celebrate life events as much as they would like.
“‘Play’, he explains, “is the ability to let go of any negative emotion. The ability to get excited about the future not live in it. Play is living in the present.” And although it may not be easy to cultivate playfulness, Steve asserts that we can all do it; it just must start from within. “Happiness is an inside job,” he said empathetically. “Play starts with a good sense of humor.”
We hope you will continue to follow us on social media throughout the week. We’ll be posting updates on all of the fun team building events, workshops and exhibitor booths. And if you’re at the conference over the next couple of days, stop and say ‘hello’! We’d love to meet you!