A Benedictine Monk once told me "Play is the work of children. Don't ever grow up". I thought I knew what he meant when he said it over fifteen years ago, but as with most life lessons, I've since learned I didn't fully appreciate the entire meaning. Now that I've been 'working' for seventeen years, I now know what he meant.
It's a state of being, an attitude, and mindset for life based on the freedoms and curiousities some of us are fortunate to experience as children. Once those freedoms to learn, discover, make mistakes without consequences, and grow are no longer part of life, then play & fun are also stripped away from it.
Learning, discovery, experimentation, and growth are what drives humanity forward and we are born to do these things - we do them as children innately, without teachings.
Work feels like play when we learn, discover, experiment, and grow. When we are not learning or growing or curious, work feels like work one step closer to the big exit. When we play, we grow, we are happy, we are healthy, and we make things.
Play on, player!