Remember when you were four years old and could pick your own clothes. Somehow we rocked pink polka dot pants with a blue zig-zag striped shirt two sizes too small, cowgirl boots, and five of your mom’s chunkiest necklaces. Can you picture it? (I provided some reference below just in case you can’t). Then you would walk into school, feeling like the coolest person on earth, or maybe not even thinking about how you looked at all.
So why can’t we do that anymore?
We need to listen to our inner child and kids in general. They somehow have wisdom beyond their years and seriously know what they’re talking about.
Kids don’t get mad when they color outside of the lines
These days we are all perfectionists. We now notice the one hair that’s out of place when we look in the mirror. When we were kids we would wildly scribble outside of the lines and not even think twice about it. If someone pointed it out, we’d just shrug and move on. Mistakes were art, and mistakes made us original. We need to make this face (as seen below), accept the things that we can not change, and move on.
Be your own best friend
When we were little and could not find anyone to play with, we would immediately come up with a game that we could play by ourselves. We might have taken on the role of the mom, dad, baby, dog, and brother but somehow it always seemed to work out. These days, we have forgotten how to be alone. It was not until I got to college that I realized it is okay to eat lunch by myself, and “no Jordan, no one is staring at you.”
Sing all the wrong words, and dance to entertain
I have a clear memory of myself dancing to entertain. Well really it was not even dancing at all. It was more like moving my feet at an insanely fast pace, making a weird face, and flapping my arms. It does not matter who is watching, or what you look like. “You look silly if you dance. You look silly if you don’t dance. So you might as well just dance”
Don’t let the little things get you down
Kids are never sad about one thing for a long time. If something does not go their way, a short pouting session will go down, until something else sparks their attention and they forget what was wrong in the first place. More often than not, when a kid falls, they jump back up, dust themselves off, and continue on un-phased. So the lesson? When you don’t let the little things get you down it is a commitment to happiness. Don’t make a mountain out of a molehill. Don’t sweat the small stuff. Focus on moving forward.
Say what you feel
Kids tell you as it is. If they don’t like a certain food, out it comes. However, in the same way they complain, they also verbalize when they’re happy. Often we feel that if we talk about something that makes us happy, we think it makes us conceited. We tend to minimize our feelings, most often to avoid conflict. At the same time, we always urge others to say what’s on their mind, and to stand up for themselves. Children haven’t developed this filter yet, this fear of speaking up. We could all work to be more honest about how we are truly feeling.
Be fearless in everything you do.
Children are brave. Either that or maybe they just don’t consider consequences. They jump off their beds assuming they can fly. They scrape their knees and proudly show off their band-aids. A story to tell. An accomplishment. As we get older, we don’t want to be seen as weak, so we don’t share when we are hurt. Kids live life fearlessly and believe there is nothing to lose, but the chance of not doing it. We could learn a lot if only we lived as fearlessly as them.
Adults laugh on average 5 times a day, while children laugh 300 times a day. We don’t have to lose that childhood naivety. Let’s bring it back. As Taylor Swift says “Darling don’t you ever grow up, it could stay this simple”
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