The Audacity to Play

Jessica Taubner is a special type of human. I met her 12 years ago when I was running for office. She went on to thrive in that world, eventually serving as Chief of Staff for Councillor Ayanna Pressley, who recently won a historic race for the Massachusetts 7th Congressional District (my new Congresswoman!).

Jessica currently serves as the Greater Boston Director for the Family Independence Initiative. A most innovative effort that reimagines the war on poverty. She is part of the Evolutionary Leadership Cohort of 2017, and a brilliant participant in last year’s Graduate Program.

I introduce Jessica to you because she is doing something unexpected. Jessica is launching a new project--a monthly playgroup for adults, and the first one is tomorrow, Sunday January 6!

Check out the power of her invitation:


Why Play?

Children are often told to “go play” to get out of the way of adults; and “quiet down! not here.” We learn that play is only allowed at certain times and in places, and is only for certain people. Over time, we come to believe it’s not okay to play.

Well, I’m bringing play back for adults. I want to debunk this myth AND to demonstrate that there is great wisdom and great possibility inherent in play. Yes, even for adults!

Aside from simply being fun, I believe play is a pathway from which we can open ourselves to being with our most painful and biggest challenges, whether it be relationships, grappling with the state of humanity and systemic oppression, or feeling debilitated from any or all of it.

My theory is that a playful spirit allows us to view such challenges and complexities from a place of curiosity and expanse rather than from the little diorama box of our ego conditioned mind and previously set rules. By creating space to play, we build our playful spirit muscle, if you will, so it becomes more available as a choice in our daily lives.

Where did this project idea come from?
The play group was born out of my practice as a member of Evolutionary Leadership, facilitated by Gibran X. Rivera. EL members are asked to manifest their purpose in the world, "holding the perspective of justice, of communities, of ancestors and traditions, healing modalities and sacred medicines" and based on a belief and commitment that the evolutionary leap we need to take to save humankind is one of deep connection.

If you or anyone you know in the greater Boston area is interested in joining this playgroup you can contact Jessica at  

It is possible that you live nowhere near Boston. But now you know about Jess anyway, and perhaps you will also be inspired to invite adults to play.