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Do It

Organize an Office Recess and Create Your Own Game

Chloe Varelidi


When you think of our everyday endeavors and going through life as adults, we're not really encouraged to be playful. But when we play games, we relax and become more receptive and less judgmental. Games trigger our creative juices—through solving problems, navigating complex systems and managing resources. They present us with hard problems; like solving a puzzle or defeating a boss. As players we need to be creative and come up with good ideas to solve those problems. They make us more playful in our way of being and experiencing life. Best of all, games bring us together. Go ahead, organize an office recess and create your own game—and use the toolkit at the link to help get you started.

Illustration by Jessica De Jesus.

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  • Kathy

    I have a friend who created a game that's a combination of soccer, baseball, and cross country. He calls it Cross Country Big Ball. It's been around for 13 years, and it's a great excuse to get family and friends together. You can read about it at

  • Taylor Seidel

    I LOVE this... Does anyone else remember episode 3, season 2 of The Office when Michael and Dwight are out for the day and everyone else hosts an impromptu Office Olympics? I can think of no better reward for winning an office game than a gold medal made out of a yogurt lid!

    Thanks for the inspiring handbook, Chloe!

  • Kimberly Lombardi

    I work for Playworks, a national non-profit dedicated to transforming and improving schools through play and physically activity. We also like to transform our work environment, through play of course! We even have a Four Square area taped out on our office floor, for easy play breaks. It really does make a difference in productivity levels, especially during that afternoon lull. We also play a lot of the same games that our full-time Program Coordinators play with the kids at our partner schools, taken right from the Playbook: The fact that we like the same games as the kids just shows that play is good for all ages!

  • tomnapper

    Worked at an office where people played Xbox most of the afternoon and then stayed late into the night doing their assignments. Did we get better work done? Dunno, but there was some great stuff out of that place during the years I worked there.

  • Stef McDonald

    At one of my first jobs, I would play video games at the end of the day with the co-worker who sat in the cubicle next to me. Really did make a difference in the way we related to one another. And of course it was lots of fun and was a great way to unwind. We were still staring at our computer screens but the intent and results were vastly different.

  • Joshua Neuman

    Pin the tail on the CEO, anyone?