By Lindsay Sibson
Kids are such wise and interesting little people… and the true joy of it all is that they are absolutely unaware of just how inspiring they can be.
I don’t have kids of my own (yet), but I have made a career out of educating our youth. Most recently, I spent two months in Italy teaching a 4 year old English. Even though it was my job to “teach her,” I was truly the one learning! Spending all day with a child can give you great insight into the simple pleasures of life.
As you grow, age and experience the ups and downs of life, you can easily stray away from the core meaning of life: to live, laugh, love and ENJOY!
Here are 4 times when it’s absolutely appropriate to “act like a kid,” no matter your age:
1. When Learning: You should always, always, ALWAYS be learning! Children are courageous when it comes to learning something new. Act like a kid and be open minded, unafraid and confident. It’s okay to not “get it right” the first time – that is part of the learning process. Let go of your inner perfectionist and TRY new things.
2. When Eating: Ever want to discover what it truly means to enjoy your food? Sit down and eat an ice cream cone with a young child! I was long finished with mine when the 4 year old was still delightfully licking hers (while it was dripping and making a mess everywhere!). As adults, we become so accustomed to shoveling down our food and not TRULY tasting it. Take the time and really TASTE your food!
3. When Loving: Kids express love freely, openly and honestly. Over my 13 year career working with children, I really cannot quantify the amount of hugs, kisses and “I love you” declarations I received. When you love and care for someone… LET THEM KNOW!
4. When Going After What We Want: When a child wants a cookie, they let you know. When a child wants to go to the playground, they let you know. Children are unabashedly clear about what their intentions, desires and feelings are about what they want. As adults, we tend to shy away from truly expressing our desires in order to be “polite” or because we don’t think we can have what we want. Act like a kid and be BOLD. Express your desires. Let other people know what you want and what you are about!
Remember when you were a kid and the simple jingle of the ice cream truck would send a surge of enthusiasm throughout your body and you couldn’t run to your mom fast enough to get a dollar? Bring back those feelings by indulging in activities you enjoyed as a child!
Here are 5 ideas to bring back your childhood joy that are totally appropriate to do as an adult:
1. Create art: Color in a coloring book, play with clay, paint… it doesn’t matter what is looks like, just enjoy the process of being creative!
2. Prepare and enjoy a meal that you loved as a child.
3. Take a bike ride in the park and enjoy an ice cream in the green grass under the beautiful sun.
4. Play a board game or card game. (just don’t fight over who gets to be what playing piece).
5. Watch an old favorite childhood movie. (and it’s still totally okay to laugh when the leprechaun pees in the fountain in the movie Labyrinth).