“We all start out knowing magic. We are born with whirlwinds, forest fires, and comets inside us. We are born able to sing to birds and read the clouds and see our destiny in grains of sand. But then we get the magic educated right out of our souls.
We get it churched out, spanked out, washed out, and combed out. We get put on the straight and narrow path and told to be responsible. Told to act our age. Told to grow up, for God’s sake. And you know why we were told that? Because the people doing the telling were afraid of our wildness and youth, and because the magic we knew made them ashamed and sad of what they’d allowed to wither in themselves.” – Robert R. McCammon
Children seem to be on to something. They experience happiness and joy at the drop of a hat, and don’t seem to cling on to the past or future as much as we adults do. Because their ego isn’t quite fully formed they are more resilient and more likely to be living in the present moment without even trying. This is just their natural state of being.
As we grow up we start adopting the ideas, thoughts and beliefs of our parents and of society. We start looking to our external world to tell us who we “should” or “shouldn’t” be.
We lose the connection with our true selves and start identifying with the image we feel is appropriate for the rest of the world to see.
The more the years pass by, we keep disconnecting from our inner wisdom and intuition that we had as children and instead keep identifying more and more with the illusory self and world.
One day we realize something doesn’t feel right, nothing we thought would make us happy is making us happy and the material possessions we thought would make us fulfilled become replaced by entirely new wants and desires.
Our appetites become insatiable, yet never quite fully satisfied. At this point we must go back to how we were before the world told us who we should be, or what we should have or not have in order to be valuable and worthy. We must go back to the wisdom we had when we were children, before society stepped in and told us we weren’t “good enough.”
Here are five perspectives about life we had as we were children that we should readopt now:
Remember when you were a child and every place and everything seemed magical? You could spend hours playing with stuffed animals or toys creating stories about their lives, or find the amazingness in things like flowers, rocks, or even just playing in dirt.
The wonderful world of our imaginations seemed so real and every place we went seemed so new to us that we would be in wonder and awe of everything. Then we started to get used to everything. We started to take people, places and things for granted and they lost their magic. If we start to look at the world from new eyes, just like the eyes of a child we find that the world really never lost its magic. It was merely us that stopped recognizing it.
2) Life is simple
To a child life is completely uncomplicated. Their entire being is simply about finding joy in that moment. They don’t hang on to conversations or worry about what they’re going to do the next day. They let tomorrow worry about itself, and leave yesterday in the past.
They are only gravitated and motivated by what is giving them pleasure and joy in that instance, without feeling guilty or ashamed about that. As adults we become attached to this idea that life has to be hard and overcomplicated. So we spend so much time worrying about things we can’t change or stressing about the future.
Joy and happiness is always available to us in the present moment, it is only up to us to choose them. Yes there will be situations that seem undesirable or like something we do not want, but if we simply focus on changing the things we can, and accepting the things we can’t, we become completely accepting of the present moment which immediately gives us inner peace.
3) Preconceived notions have not been formed
Children don’t exist in stereotypes. They don’t buy into belief systems. They don’t care what race you are, what political party you belong to or what God you worship. They simply see another human being, without all the labels attached to it.
When we start seeing other human beings in terms of the fact that they are more like us than not, we find that everyone wants to be loved, has fears, has goals and dreams.
Yes, the details of their lives may be different than ours, but at the end of the day, we are all more alike than we think. When we truly realize this, we are able to practice empathy and compassion for others, EVEN if their skin color, nationality, or personality is different than ours.
4) All feelings are welcomed with open arms
The whole range of feelings is welcomed with open arms by children. They are sad one minute so they cry. A few minutes later, they feel completely happy again so they are laughing and playing. No emotion is “resisted”. When we learn to actually feel our emotions, and stop feeling bad about them or denying that they are happening, we start working through them completely.
This will prevent blockages, resentments, and grudges from forming.
5) Gratitude can be felt for even the simplest things
Children can be happy about holding a bug, about having a cardboard box to play with, or about having a piece of candy. They can become so excited and appreciative of the tiniest and most simple things that we may take for granted.
However, when we start appreciating the small things, we open ourselves up to receive more. Gratitude for what we already have only draws to us more things to be grateful for.
The wisdom that is our innate nature is something that we can start tapping into at any given time.
It doesn’t matter how many years have passed that we started drifting more and more apart from our inner child, this intuition is still inside all of us just waiting to be recognized. Let your inner child come out and play. You may be surprised by the results.