Next time you’re in a park or playground, watch kids as they scream and chase one another, laughing loudly as they play. Look consciously at them. Notice their approach to their environment—it is one of innocence, curiosity, interest. They engage with one another wholly in the moment; it is rare to see a child sitting observing their peers or judging the next move based on the goings on in the play dynamic. No, children act, think, speak and behave in the moment. Something we’ve lost touch with in our journey into adulthood.
As we grow into adults we shed behaviours that are labelled childish and replace them with more socially acceptable “adult” behaviours. Children have a wonderful capacity for creativity because they can harness their unbridled imaginations. As we age, at some point we choose to bridle our imaginations, close our minds and focus only on those aspects of life that we feel can make us better. We give in to comparison thinking, seeking to set our behaviours against those of others in a judgmental viewpoint. These judgments, labels and comparisons have stifled our true nature. We seek to control our existence and in controlling it we close our minds to the reality of the world that surrounds us. We neglect to engage in our surroundings preferring instead to internally judge, analyze and get lost in a virtual world of decisions, evaluations and worry.
We’ve forgotten the lessons of our childhood and have fallen into the mould that has been generated for us. We’ve chosen to follow the path that was pre-ordained and spend each day striving to further control our lives, shape them, mould them while the only framework upon which to build is an idealistic vision implanted at some point in our existence between childhood and adulthood.
It’s important to let go of idealizations and bring down the confines of our life. Pause, breathe, look around and accept what we have. Imagine. Engage. Laugh. Play. Only then can we free our minds. Only then can we have some semblance of peace in our existence. This is the only control we really have, our inherent ability to engage with our world.