There’s a lesson in every story—even ones for kids. Children’s Book Author Stephen Evans breaks down why sometimes you should stop acting like a grown-up and discover your childhood spark for life.
Since I’ve been reading and speaking at schools across the country and around the world, it has brought back many of my childhood memories. Children have a special sparkle in their eyes. As we grow older, that sparkle seems to fade away. Here are five childhood lessons that will help you keep or bring back the twinkle in your eyes.
1. Try Something New
When you are a child you are always experiencing something new. You go new places, meet new people, and you have not developed a “been there, done that” attitude yet. Every day is a different and there’s always excitement around the corner, the next car ride, or the next weekend. Experiencing something for the first time is a chance to learn more about yourself. Learning something new about you may be the most important aspect of a first time experience. I believe doing something you’ve never done before helps keep you young in the heart, mind, and eyes.
2. Get Excited About Something
Children will tell you how excited they are for something whether it’s in an hour or six months down the road. When children are packed with anticipation their smiles grow, their eyes get big, and their voices get loud. It’s awesome to witness. Somewhere in adulthood we forget how to embrace and enjoy the excitement of waiting. We stress over everything that has to get done first, or, even worse, complain about it completely, ignoring the excitement we should be using as a driving force.
3. Ask Questions and Share Answers
In the grand lesson of life, you’re either a student or a teacher. You can learn from the people you encounter or you can teach them something new. Children are quick to ask questions and even faster to tell you what they know. As adults, we either think we already know the answer, or we assume that everything we know is common knowledge and we forget our obligation to share the knowledge we have obtained along the way. So, in every interaction ask yourself, “Am I supposed to be the student here or the teacher?”
4. Make New Friends
During childhood, you become best friends over the little things. You always look for something you have in common with one another instead of looking at how you’re different. On the playground children spark up conversations, invite each other to play, and make new friends. Anywhere you see adults, you will find them buried in their phone or by a screen. Next time you find yourself on a bus, plane or train, look around and see if you find something in common with someone. You may have just found a friend.
5. Let your Imagination Run Wild
It’s no surprise children have wild imaginations. All day long they can be lost in a whole other world. As adults, we seem to lose that talent. More often than not we just choose to not go there. My question and challenge to you is why? Deep off in your imagination is where your dreams go to rest. It’s a world of your own where you can go to escape a busy day or hectic lifestyle. Stepping into the make believe is a vacation in your mind and that’s where the best thoughts sometimes hide.
So, even as an adult, go out and find a friend you can ask for or give advice to. Let you imaginations run wild and embrace the excitement and anticipation of going out and trying new things. Don’t grow all the way up and be your own kind of awesome.
Outside of being an author, Stephen is the head chef for the University of Missouri Athletic Dining. Checkout his latest books on Amazon.com.