I’ve been recently reading about the scientifically validated benefits of childhood activities for adults. It got me remembering what it was like as a kid, what I used to do, how I used to spend my time. It’s hard to believe that I had so much time!
There’s a lot of evidence where research shows there are many health benefits to adults partaking in childhood activities. Do you remember what you used to do as a kid?
Swinging on a swing in the park or the backyard, going for a bike ride to nowhere in particular, going for a walk in the woods, playing in the sandbox for hours, reading a book, colouring; so many things! And why? Just because. At some point we grew up and now we do things because it’s good for us or society tells us to or we’ve gotten into the habit of doing it.
As Mark Sisson from Mark’s Daily Apple states in his blog: “As adults we adopt so many “filters” that in various ways sift or dilute or distort our experience of ourselves – let alone our apprehension of the people and events around us. We put down enjoyments to make room for additional responsibilities. We deny ourselves even basic needs (like sleep) in the name of abstract obligations or societal values. Over time, we buy into this skewed definition of what constitutes the “real world” – and end up diminishing our real well-being as a result. Maybe adulthood – and health – don’t need to be so straight-laced and confining as we too often characterize them.”
So how do we “get back there”? How do we access that childhood place of no-time, just because?
Some of us will start by imagining what it will feel like to include fun in our day, to let go of the “shoulds” and let ourselves be. Some of us will want to schedule a time, actually putting it into their agenda. And some of us will just start doing it.
Whatever your way, check it out and let me know how it goes. How do you spend your time? Does any of that time have anything to do with doing something that you used to do when you were a child? Do you spend any time these days with a reason of “just because” instead of “I have to, I should, I must”?
What if you were to consciously decide to do something totally different every day that you used to do when you were a kid; something like colouring, swinging, daydreaming, climbing something, creating some art or taking a nap?
There’s lots of interesting research supporting the health benefits for adults doing the things I just mentioned but wouldn’t it be ironic to do those things because it’s healthy and good for you and not “just because”?