Everyone has an inner child - that plaintiff voice inside our heads that makes reach to life's difficulties whether you acknowledge it or not. Sometimes our inner child can make life difficult by allowing us to be triggered by external actions of others or day to day challenges in life. But if you can actually harness the power of your inner child for good, you can create some serious hacks to use in your work, life and study. Here's just some.
Make Friends and Connections
Children are naturals when it comes to making friends. If you’ve ever watched a group of kids at the local park for any length of time you’ll often see kids that are strangers brought together to the same place become instant playmates - with perhaps the only thing they have in common is the space they are in and a desire to play and connect.
Try and tap into that desire to connect and play. Make it a challenge to introduce yourself or at least talk to 5 new people a day. Strike up a conversation while waiting for your coffee at your local café, the bus stop, library or at the checkout queue at your local supermarket. It can help you make new friends, professional connections or more. Who knows where it will take you?
Kids are born negotiaters. Ever tried to get a child to do something they didn’t want to do? They will do their darndest to negotiate their way out of bedtime, to have more TV or screen time or more time with their friends. Channel that energy of your inner child into negotiating what you really want but with an adult perspective. You could use this for more time to complete assignments, negotiate a pay raise, or negotiate for more time away from work with family and friends.
Don’t take no for an answer
NO. NO.NO. Children don’t like hearing the word no. And, if you’ve ever heard a 3 year old have a tantrum, you will most likely hear the word no a lot. And while not taking no for an answer doesn’t necessarily mean throwing a tantrum, ( ‘cos that would be bad..), the real lesson here is one of persistence and tenacity. If you are passionate and/or committed to not taking no for an answer can increase your chances of success despite any knockbacks or hurdles.
Children are natural big thinkers. They believe they can accomplish anything without the highly attuned adult filters of logic and societal limitations. Wanna build a rocket ship to Mars? No problem! Build a time machine to go visit the dinosaurs? Sure, we’ll be there and back before dinner time. Channelling that same energy towards your dreams and aspirations, can only mean that the bigger the dream, the bigger the success.
Channel your imagination
Your imagination can play a critical role in decision making, problem solving and writing. Utilising your imagination in positive ways can also enhance mental health and help with healing against trauma. As children, our imaginations are naturally fired up, but often as we become inured to the drudgery of adult responsibilities we tend to use our imagination less and less. Practice using your imagination through creative writing, applying it to solving everyday problems and regular reading for pleasure can also help enhance your imaginative powers and transform the ordinary into the extraordinary.
George Bernard Shaw famously said – "we don’t stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing” Having a natural sense and love play is onr of the biggest insurers against premature aging.
Children have an innate sense of play, with a natural ability to bring elements of play into everyday life. Finding time to play as an adult is critical for balance. for reducing stress and enhancing mental health. Whether it be as simple as kicking a ball around a yard, doing some adult colouring in or going out dancing with friends, making time for play is crucial for augmenting our ability to transform everyday experiences (even stressful ones) into something entertaining. So go on, go play!
There’s no one more curious than a child. Curiosity about their rapidly expanding world fuels growth and intelligence, so take time out to learn new things, be curious about how things work and be curious about the world at large. It will make for a richer, more inspired experience – whatever you’re doing and will help with learning of all stripes.
Follow your gut
Whether it be in work, relationships, or other day to day decisions, as adults we often make choices based on logic rather than our gut, and ignore the inner voice that guides us. Children, on the other hand are experts at following their gut, in fact, it drives most of their actions. As an adult, we have the benefit of being able to work simultaneously with both logic and intuition without compromising either.
Live in the moment
Much has been written on the benefits of being present or living in the moment. Children are experts at living in the moment. You never see children wondering about what the future will bring- they milk the joy from each moment as it comes to them. being present and fully immersing ourselves in each moment can have enormous benefits on all aspects of our life.