There's absolutely nothing wrong with acting like a
child in many ways. Of course, we don't want to
throw tantrums and start crying because we can't find our
pencil, but other than those things, acting like a child
can be a wonderful way to approach the world.
Children see the world the way it is--full of magic and
wonder--while the adults that we're supposed to act like
tend to see things as routine and boring and
"normal." Adults never skip, it seems, and
we're more interested in propriety than we are in anything
I love it when someone hands me a bottle of bubbles
waiting to be made, or a jump rope or a Frisbee.
Whenever I go to group functions, I usually end up playing
with the kids because the adults generally sit around, not
using any of the energy they've been given, talking about
the same things they talk about all the time. I've
already talked about those things, but I haven't played
tag with these particular kids. And when we move on
to something else, the kids will use their imaginations to
decide what to do, while the adults will move by rote to
something else that they've already done a million times.
This isn't an attempt to slam adults--obviously, many good
things come from adults. But all in all, they've
left behind many of the great qualities of being a child
in favor of adopting quite a few not-so-great-qualities of
being adults. We can enrich our lives greatly by not
abandoning the things that make childhood great--the sense
of wonder, the non-judgmental acceptance of others, the
holy curiosity, risk-taking and daring.
Rather than criticize people who act child-like, it may be
worth our while to learn from them. Childish is one
thing, and it can be very negative, but child-like can be
a way of acting in the world that allows us to get more
out of all these wonderful gifts that we have.
Why do we tend to abandon even the positive elements of
Why do we tend to see people who haven't abandoned those
elements as childish rather than child-like?
What kinds of things did you do, and what ways did you
look at the world when you were a child, that might be
positive for you now?