When you grow up, your heart dies.
– The Breakfast Club
That line from The Breakfast Club wasn’t a new sentiment in the 80’s. It’s something teens have been saying and adults have been fighting for a very long time. While grown ups balk at the idea of being out of touch, we still lament the fact that we don’t have as much fun as we used to.
We don’t face things with reckless abandon because there are often too many responsibilities on our mind. But there is a balance. If you want a happy and successful life, you do need to prioritize your obligations. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t enjoy your day. If you’ve gotten into a rut where you find yourself going through the motions without a lot of laughter or fun, it’s a problem. You deserve happiness. If you’re not finding the joy in life, it’s time to reboot your youthful, explorative nature.
Seven Ways to Recapture Joy as Inspired by Children
Children are naturally joyful. They’re not loaded down stress and everything is a new experience, which makes it a lot easier to be enthralled. While you definitely can’t go back to being a child, you can adopt some of the things that make them joyful.
- Try Something New. It’s hard to feel joy when you follow the same routine every day. Children have the advantage of having limited experiences, which means days are full of new adventures. Adding something new to your day doesn’t have to be expensive. It just needs to be something you haven’t done yet. Make a list of some of the things in your area and get out to explore.
- Do Something Creative. Have you ever noticed that children are always being creative? They play pretend, make small crafts, and color all the time. Creativity is a great energizer and adults who don’t work in creative fields often don’t get enough of it. You might like something simple, like an adult coloring book, or you can do something a little more time consuming, like a whole course on theater.
- Be Spontaneous. Adults are so scheduled today that there’s rarely ever time to just go with the flow. Take some time to do something adventurous and unplanned.
Life Long Learners Stay Joyful. One thing that keeps children interested is the fact that they’re always learning. Adults stop actively pursuing knowledge outside of their career field once their school days are done. Pursuing a subject you’re interested in can bring back a lot of joy.
- Get Dirty. We don’t spend a lot of time playing in the mud anymore. But there’s something fun and invigorating about getting your hands dirty or getting so lost in an activity that you don’t care about the mess.
- Be Silly. Not all of us are naturally silly, though kids will bring this out of you because they adore being goofy. It doesn’t matter how you attempt this idea, whether by reading comics or using funny voices or telling a bunch of “Dad Jokes” on Facebook. You’ll be surprised how much lighter your day is when you find silly things to amuse you.
- Find the Humor. The best medicine for any problem is often laughter. Kids laugh all the time and, when you think about it, nearly anything meant to entertain children is also funny. If you can add some comedy to your life, whether by spending more time with lighthearted friends or simply watching a great comedian, it will help bring back some of life’s joy.
Adulthood is full of responsibilities, but it doesn’t need to be absent joy. Take a few lessons from the kids in your life and find the opportunities to tune back in to the fun all around you.