I loved to play ping pong as a kid. Most of that was in my Grandparent’s basement. Most of that was over Thanksgiving, or a two-week summer vacation when my sister and two cousins would stay with Granny and Gramps. We’d play together. I’d play myself against the wall. I prided myself in mostly defensive play, countering spins, placements, and speeds. It was just a fun game. And with grandparents that didn’t want us watching TV, it was one of the good options. I still love ping pong. But only play once or twice per year.
Ping pong feels natural to me. It’s a skill I haven’t forgotten. It seems to come back pretty easy, despite some slowed reflexes that come with age, and, eyesight that isn’t as clear.
I’m curious about the things that any of us are naturally good at, even back to our childhoods. I’m curious about the way that those things carry with us into different circumstance in our adult lives. I’ll often ask that question of groups — “What is something that you were good at as a kid?” — because I find it helpful to animate just a bit of that energy around natural talent, gift, or ease. And then, of course, invite a bit of dialogue about how that could be grown in current work and circumstance.
With ping pong I like the flow of it. I liked the immediacy of attentiveness. I liked the way it challenged an instinct. I like playing it with others. Sometimes to win. But mostly to be in the game itself.
Lots of meaning to follow with this. But this morning, I’m content to just notice the simple, and follow the joy of that. Something that I loved, just because. I think I seek more “just because” in my day to day.