I remember when I was a teenager in Toronto, my girlfriends and I had our first fake IDs made to get into clubs and parties. We couldn’t wait until our 18th birthday, and tried everything to look older. Make-up, higher heels, and sophisticated clothing. Now we are double that age, and try to do everything to look younger. Funny thing that we use the same tricks to try and turn back the aging-clock: Make-up, higher heels, and sophisticated clothing. Why did we not realize how amazing it was to be young and enjoy our childhood? Why did we always want to be older?
Society expects us to be responsible. Grow up fast, get an education, find a partner, have children, take care of them, get old, retire and die. So when do we actually have the chance to live out our dreams, and have fun? As a child you are not aware of the freedom that you have. You simply grow and become an adult. Well my dear adults, now that you are finally “there”, it’s time to reverse the process, start believing in Fairytales again, and awaken your inner child. Yes, s/he is still in there, but most likely has been sleeping for the last decades. Let’s wake it up, and see what new adventures the world has to offer us!
A common problem is that people are scared to be judged by society. What will people say if they see me like this? This reminds me of a date that I had a few years ago. I met a guy at an event in Frankfurt. Let’s call him “Mr. Cool”. On our first date, we went for a nice summer walk. Along the way, I saw a fun playground. I don’t know what has gotten into me, but I ran towards it, and decided to climb the monkey bars, run on the overhead ladder, go on the swings… you get the point. I ran around acting like a crazy kid. I glanced at Mr. Cool, and I cannot even describe the look he gave me. A mix of “Jesus-what-the-hell-are-you-doing-get-off-that-swing-immediately!” and “I-don’t-know-this-crazy-girl-she-is-such-a-weirdo” look. To be honest, at that moment I didn’t even care what the ice block Mr. Cool was thinking about me, because I was having so much fun. He came to me, and I thought that he will finally join me on the swing, but instead he said, “Galia, stop it! This is embarrassing! I am a famous actor (He is indeed a well-known German actor), what will people think of me when they see me making a fool of myself on this playground?” Right at that point, I realized that it will never work out between us. Money and fame aside, if the guy cannot be easy-going and appreciate the simple joys in life, then he is not for me. Fun is not just eating at expensive restaurants, but also doing silly things like jumping on a swing together. I politely walked with him back to where we met, said goodbye, smiled, and left as quickly as possible. Why do some people take themselves so seriously? Do we really have to stick to these rigid “Adult behavior rules”, or can we sometimes let our inner child out to play? Mr. Cool called the next day to invite me to dinner, but I told him that my heart was not in it. I could not pretend to be someone that I’m not. I was looking for the one that would climb the monkey bars with me, laughing and being crazy together like children.
That is not to say that we have to ignore our responsibilities, quite the contrary! We have to enjoy ourselves and have fun while achieving our goals and tasks. When you do something with a happy heart, your task becomes a pleasure, and the result will be better. For example, if you are cleaning your car, draw funny figures on the dirty window, and send a picture of it to your loved one. If you have to clean your flat, put on some loud music and run around the house doing funny dances, while cleaning. Do what you can to make the task more fun. I know that daily stress due to work and personal issues can bring a huge amount of pressure upon us, but we must try to do our best to make this process easier for us. Being hard on yourself will not make the problems go away. You must give your “Adult-self” a chance to rest and rethink how you can ease the pressure with a good strategy. Try doing something fun, different, childish and funny in order to bring your mind to positive thoughts. Maybe then, new problem-solving ideas will come to you! The easiest way to begin is by smiling more often.
The older I get, the more I realize how special the time was when I was a child. Free of worries, free of fear, free to live and enjoy! It’s time to bring back the innocence, joy and pure form of fun. Purity. The world is missing this. We need to go back to the basics before we had the car, the mortgage, and the debts. We have to try to capture that feeling of pure joy that we once felt as children. There is much evil and hatred out there. Just turn on the news. Every day another catastrophe. Let’s try to be children of light, instead of darkness. You can enjoy by doing the simplest of things. Remember how excited we used to be when walking with our parents in the forest, looking for mushrooms? Or making homemade cookies with our grandmother, and eating them with our friends? Try to capture this feeling again.
Maybe these few ideas can help: look at photos of your childhood, play board games, take walks around fun places, go to an amusement park, throw out the “cool” attitude/personality, and be who you are, live more in the present, sing funny songs, draw, paint (even if you cant do it well!) be curious, ask questions, daydream, try doing the things you loved to do as a kid, play video games, and most important of all, never say “I’m too old”. The child within you is waiting to come out and play. So go ahead, be silly. No one is watching! And if they do, who cares?