To children, the world of adults is one of wonder and limitless possibilities. They can drive cars, and explore the world, they can ride roller coasters and they can stay out past sundown! Yet as adults, our nostalgia for childhood often replaces the carefree fun we thought we’d be having. It’s the age old conundrum about the grass being greener, but maybe we need to take a closer look at the grass!
Live in the moment
A mindful appreciation for the present is the key to happy living. While adults fuss and bother over tomorrow’s worries and yesterday’s losses, children leave tomorrow to be and forget about yesterday, focussing their energies on the present. While this is general wisdom, often repeated, it is hard to inculcate into practice passively. It can only come from a determined decision.
An easy way to reign in your thoughts and focus on your present surroundings is to turn off your mobile and your computer for a few hours everyday. Take some time to go for a walk and explore parts of your city or neighbourhood that are new to you. The novelty of discovering new places and maneuvering unknown terrain keeps your focus strongly on the present!
Embrace your curiosity
Cats and kids both are known to be curious. They are also both exceedingly indulgent in the little things that adults take for granted. While our ‘adultness’ inhibits us from asking too many ‘why’s’ either to avoid risks or save on time, maturity doesn’t necessarily have to exist divorced from a sense of child-like wonder. Learning something new by visiting a museum, taking up a short course on anything that piques your interest or simply opening up a new book that takes you to vistas unexplored could revitalize your sense of wonder in the world. Even the simple, often overlooked, act of subscribing to an informative newsletter can brighten your day with a few minutes of astonishment.
Get your feet wet
Getting hands on with a new craft is a great way to relive your childhood while also nurturing your creativity. Being able to start out unknowing and develop a new skill is a uniquely human experience. This could be something as simple as picking up a pen and paper and doodling or as elaborate as mastering the violin. Working on a new skill and setting your mind to solve the riddles and weather the difficulties of perfecting a craft is an essential component to finding one’s inner joy.
Move your body
Do you remember the impulse to run out into the rain to play? Do you still feel wistful when you come across a group of people playing football or cricket in the park? Sports and games aren’t only for children and the pros! More and more adults are seeking new experiences that take them away from the stresses of modern life and social communities promoting them are sprouting up everywhere! So, consider taking some time to go trampolining, laser-tagging, go-carting, rock-climbing or even bungee jumping – the possibilities are endless. Moving your body in ways you haven’t before is a surefire way to reconnect with the child in you.
Use your authority
Possibly, the biggest reason why we couldn’t wait to grow up was to be able to do things our way. No more permissions to be taken before opening up a pack of chips right before dinner or having a large bowl of corn flakes for lunch, topped up with a bit of ice cream. So, go out for a ride in the middle of the night or scream at the top of your lungs from the terrace without worrying about how you may look as much as how you may feel.
The occasional flip of the script can spark joy where otherwise, mundanity (a.k.a adulting) rules.