Did You Know That Life Lessons Could Be Child's Play? - Common Sense Living Newsletter
 
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Did You Know That Life Lessons Could Be Child's Play?

Life
Sep 17, 2014

 

Have you ever noticed how children don't hesitate to chase after and catch a butterfly? Or how they seldom tire of ordering the same thing at every restaurant? (Yes, French fries most of the time). Or how they aren't afraid to speak their minds to any stranger who comes by? Or persist with the same question for hours till you give them a satisfactory answer.

I went with my nephew to a store over the weekend. And it's funny how each time he enters that particular store, he goes to the same counter and picks up one more car in a different colour and shape. It's like tradition for him. And then I thought to myself, he makes his life so simple, he knows exactly what he wants without worrying about finding anything else.

Then there's another incident that stands out in my memory. I was volunteering at an educational NGO that I support and conducting a class on the kite flying festival, Makar Sankranti. So I asked them what comes to their mind when they think of flying kites. And one small boy in the class left me dumbfounded. He said, "Birds die with the maanjha (coarse thread) used during the festival." His sensitivity and compassion touched me so deeply that his words remain with me years later.

At another session on the elections in India recently, one group of 10 year olds actually created a political party based on the pencil brand Nataraj. Their motto: To spread education -- A simple way of doing something for your nation and using a symbol familiar to everyone. Great imagination, great marketing. And these were kids who had had no initiation into branding and all the theories behind it. They just used the first object available to them and made the most of it.

Source: Ami Parikh / Shutterstock
And so I've started to believe that life, work, business, entrepreneurship, idea generation can actually be that simple. Have you ever looked to children for inspiration? Well, I'm beginning to see them in a whole new light. And I would like to share with you some of the observations and parallels I've made.

  1. View the world with newness: Children are always amazed and intrigued by everything around them. Their eyes spark up by seeing cats and dogs on the road. As adults, we rush past and just see that they don't come in our way. So use those child-like eyes once again. Take time to view small things around you with patience and amazement. And not just your environment, view the work you do with wonder each day as well. Give it the attention it deserves from fresh eyes, not old jaded ones, merely getting a job done.

  2. Keep the curiosity bug alive: Children ask questions constantly... the whys, the hows, the whats never end. And in those questions they make sense of the world in the best way they can. They comprehend their little universe, they make peace with their surroundings. So don't be afraid to question as much as you like. In fact, as you grow older, the questions should only increase because your universe is expanding. It includes so many more complexities, so many more dimensions. And questioning will help you make some sense of it, put life in better perspective.

  3. Play a lot and play often: We send kids outdoors to play for an hour or two every day. We allow them to be occupied with their toys and don't disturb them in their childlike games of dolls and house. We let them pretend and play. So why should you stop yourself from doing the same? Feel free to indulge in a little make-believe at times. Play for the fun of it, without keeping track of the time or worrying about the reward. Include play in your life each day, through a sport, a hobby or time to yourself, and watch yourself grow as a person.

  4. Leave logic behind sometimes: Kids are irrational in their tastes... Even their food doesn't make sense. They can mix jam and sugar in everything! But we don't question their fears, tastes and beliefs. Likewise, it's ok if you want to do something that doesn't make sense to the world. It's ok if no one understands your dreams or your goals. They are yours and yours alone. So believe in them and pursue them. And give up on them only when you're ready to. Because like children, you may outgrow your own logic, but let time decide when that happens.

  5. Say it as it is: Children speak their mind always. They tell you things as they are. They don't keep them inside and they don't worry about the consequences. But we've grown into a world where political correctness is the norm. Where we write and delete, till we've actually lost the essence of what we want to say. So be a child once again in your communications; talk to people with full honesty. And do it with the pure heart of a child. This will ensure no one gets offended and they know you're doing it for their own good.

  6. Find comfort in familiarity: The needs of children aren't many. They don't seek much besides the essentials. They find comfort in familiar faces. They get security from clinging to their parents. But as adults, we long to be independent. We pretend we can survive alone. We believe we need some new stimulation each day. But sameness is not such a bad thing, doing the same thing each day actually translates into discipline. So seek solace in the familiar, find comfort in routine and know that it will take you ahead.

  7. Be spontaneous in your actions: Children don't worry who's watching them sing or dance or skip. They simply focus on the task at hand and immerse themselves in it completely. They don't need or fear an audience, they just enjoy being who they are. Over time we've forgotten who we truly are and how we would like to respond to the world. So take a cue from children. Dance like no one's watching you, sing like no one's listening and simply become one with what you do. In that oneness you will find completeness and satisfaction.

  8. Don't get stuck in a rut: Children are restless, they move from one activity to another, their concentration shifts and they forget what you tell them. And after a good night's sleep, the next day has no traces of the previous one. View life and people like a child. Don't hold on to grudges, failures, prejudices or anything that keeps you from moving on to the next big thing. Get up each day with a new vision of hope and possibility. Because every day is a new day and, in your mind and life, that's really all that matters.

And the last lesson from children: Laugh a lot, laugh for no reason at all and laugh till you look silly... Because there's no better medicine in life than laughter.☺

 
 

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15 Responses to "Did You Know That Life Lessons Could Be Child's Play?"

MPS CHAUHAN

17 Jan, 2015

Today's congested and busiest life of all human being. Article is very inspiring and energising to all of us.

KRISHNAGOPAL

24 Sep, 2014

Absolutely right, as long as I lived my life always as a 'todays man' I had a perfect tomorrows and after days. When I started thinking about the future, near future, immediate future and long term future., and what not literally I am left with more and more worries and more dark circles only. Good, it is time fro me to go back to my old attitude of living life as a 'todays man'

dev golchha

18 Sep, 2014

My 18 months old kid is a "art of living" book. He has abundant energy, do not have dark circles, never gets tired, eats when hungry, refuses when not even if its the best things we as adults will gulp when stomach full,sleeps on time, gets up when he gets a good night sleep. I ask sometimes-what makes him the way he is? And my intellect tells me-he lives "now"...do all what he can "now",eats if he's hungry "now", plays if he has to "now" no matter what he has in hand....no choices..living "now" . Learning from him every day the lesson of living "now" which we all practiced when we were kids but education/degrees took away the very common lesson of life.

KEYUR MODI

18 Sep, 2014

excellent write up pl keep on sending

Kashyap Kapadia

18 Sep, 2014

Extremely pleased to read this article.It is a fact that we can learn many innovative things from children but we feel that we know better.Our ego does not permit us to learn from them.They are very innocent & good at heart.They will always give frank opinion.To be very frank,I have a learnt a lot from my son.

Jaishankar Jayaraman

18 Sep, 2014

Hi Ritika Another amazing post by you. Even when we grew up as children, we did all these things. As we grew up, we assumed we knew everything so we forgot what was supposed to be done. Its important to re-discover the child in us and start from scratch. Thank you so much for awakening the child in us. I'm also thrilled by Mr. Srihari's personal life. May God bless him with all the wishes.

s.sadagopan

18 Sep, 2014

an excellent article. in my younger days i came across a poem of mythili charan gupta about an old person longing for his lost childhood. although i cant quote fully, some poignent lines .... mai mathwali,doud dwar per kadi hui,,badi hui, ..... chintha ke chakkar mein padkar jeevan bi ek boj bana.... how i wish that i never grew up.

MANJUNATHAN BELLUR

17 Sep, 2014

Ice advice to remain active, positive and enthusiastic

Caetano Pires

17 Sep, 2014

After I had my first child I life threw up so many lessons to offer. A child doesnt know whats fear, whats negative thinking, whats failure. As we know darkness is just an absense of light. So to her there is no such things as problem or failure in life. A child doesnt believe this, or doesnt know this or doesnt acknowledge this...because a child doesnt process thoughts ...a child simply is. a Pure form of Living in the Present. A child is pure in her mind and has no bad intent, agenda and doesnt judge or have any mental noise...the source of all our unhappiness. We can be like a child. A child has a natural tendency to learn and very sensitive to enviroment. Everything is processed. Hence keep your children safe from evils of Media, Bad Mouths etc. Regards, Caetano

Priotosh Deb

17 Sep, 2014

Children connect with each other very easily. Four children in a lift will talk to each other. Four adults will check their cell phones. I always talk to at least one person during my movement in a lift. In my housing society I made many friends during my conversation in the lift. It helps me connect with humans like children do

amar nath jha

17 Sep, 2014

kahane ka tarika achha hai.kahi gayi baatei sateek hain

Vinay Maira

17 Sep, 2014

A very interesting and thought provoking article. As adults, we seem to have forgotten the pleasures of childhood. Thanks Ms. Bajaj for sharing your observations. Vinay Maira

MURALI SOUNDARARAJAN

17 Sep, 2014

Well said on "Did You Know That Life Lessons Could Be Child's Play". It reminds one of what we have heard often from Swami Parthasarathy in his lectures. Child always lives in the present, no worries of the past and no anxieties of the future. That gives them the energy and enthusiasm to enjoy whatever they do all the time. Spontaneity in their actions is what differentiates them from grown-ups and it is an expression of divinity all the time. There goes the old tamil saying, Kuzhandaiyum Deivamum gunathaal onru - "Child and the Divine are are of the same gunaas.

cssrihari

17 Sep, 2014

Dear Miss.Ritika, Your article is quite inspiring.I would like to share my own life experience. In 2006 March my beloved Angel, my daughter came in my married life.Almost 11 years without a child I was quite desperate in my married life as I felt along with my wife that Just we two will not complete the Institute of 'Family'. I adopted my pretty Angle 'Nidhi' with all the Stupid legal interference as the sitting judge was not knowing anything about 'Adoption' as he was a Session judge with Criminal law in mind. Nidhi was just 900 to 1000 gms.when she was left by someone at side of a fish market near a gutter without knowing her ability to fill life with contentment. God's destiny brought her in our life to fulfill my 'Family' frame completed. She had repeated Chest infection due to her underweight and negligence during her birth. But my wife's dedication and my daughter's feeling for her adopted parents has brought so much energy and zeal in her that no one can match. I left my managerial job after 21 years of service of hectic travelling and want to spend so much time with her that I shall never regret that I missed her childhood days. She inspires me all the time how one can fight with all the odds as a new born 900 to 1000 gms.child herself could fight with nature,society and destiny. She is my Inspiration,living God and Proof of Almighty.Every day she inspires me to fight against my own odds like spine injury during my early profession. Let me confess my grit to fight odds is just 1% of hers. O God! Give every child the lap of a mother and every mother the joy of a Child! Regards, C.S.SRIHARI.

DHANRAJ

17 Sep, 2014

Its something we forgot in the rat race .....thanks a tonne....think should inculcate in daily life......

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