Why I’ll never let go of my inner child
On optimism, audacity and joy of life
Every time I go through a rough period in my life, I often return to my childhood memories that make me feel better. Thinking about all the mischief, running down the hill with my dogs, jumping into pool with my friends, sledging, building lego castles just bring a smile to my face.
Why? When we grow up, become adults or whatever you’d like to call it, we lose something we have only as kids. It’s probably one of the most beautiful things we as humans have during our childhood years.
As kids, we experience pure joy in its true sense.
Do you remember?
Do you remember, when as a kid, you were excited about building sand castles? When you built a water dam around it, it got cooler? What about that time when you painted an awesome drawing, and you couldn’t wait to show it to someone, anyone really. Can you recall the times when your creativity didn’t know boundaries? When you thought about choosing a rocket man or ballerina life career? How awesome would that be? Do you remember waking up, full of joy, looking forward to exploring what a new day will bring?
How does it differ from when you wake up now, having only a few seconds after your eyes open, before the reality kicks in?
I often recall the times I couldn’t wait to be in a kinder garden so I can play with my friends. After I was excited to go home and run around the house and across the lawn with our dog, while my dad was watering it.
Do you remember the times when the world was your playground, and every new day was an adventure?
An old university classmate of mine recently posted a picture of his daughter playing in the pile of autumn leaves. This one single picture captured everything that childhood means. It reflected perfectly the one thing we as adults look for so relentlessly. Joy. Pure happiness.
We grow up only to forget what we already knew
Do you ever wonder what happens to us when we grow up and become so-called ‘adults’? How is it possible that the moment we ‘grow up’ we almost instantly manage to lose the ability to experience joy and happiness? What happens to our inner child?
Isn’t it funny that from knowing how to enjoy life unconsciously we switch to the adult mode of ongoing search for ways to enjoy life, consciously?
Isn’t it weird that the more we learn, have and achieve in our lives, the more we sometimes forget to live?
Has it ever happen to you that the moment you start showing signs of kids’ behaviour, you’re called out for being childish? Don’t take me wrong. I’m not trying to advocate childish behaviour such as blaming someone else for your own mistakes or outrages cry rather than trying to fix whatever is the problem. I’m also not saying being an adult sucks all the time. It doesn’t not.
Every stage of our lives has many things we can and should look forward to experiencing.
So, yes. Sometimes, acting like a child, it’s not okay. But keeping a bit of your inner child is not entirely wrong. We, as adults, tend to look at everything from a very realistic, if not a negative perspective.
What about looking at it from a little more positive perspective.
What can we as adults learn from kids?
Kids are the best at advocating everything we are looking for as adults. They don’t use phrases such as ‘it can’t be done’ or ‘this is impossible’ as often as adults do.
Kids don’t need brands to tell them ‘nothing is impossible’.
So why I never want to lose my inner child?
- Because children are honest with their emotions, they aren’t afraid to say ‘I love you’.
- Children’s imagination and audacity has no limits.
- They are bold and fearless.
- They are dreamers and optimists.
Whenever I practice indoor climbing, I spend a lot of time thinking about height and what can happen to me up there, before I actually climb the wall. And while I’m loosing my time thinking, there are all these small climbers who already made it to the top of the climbing wall and back. For shame, Ada!
Keeping a little bit of your inner child means having a joyous life without a conscious need to look for it. It involves using your gut rather than magazines, apps or websites that teach you how to live a happy life, again.
In order to live happily, you don’t need a script, you just need to start listening to your inner child voice from time to time.