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Childhood Wisdom You Need to Rediscover for a Happier Life.

Childhood Wisdom You Need to Rediscover for a Happier Life.

“Great is the human who has not lost his childlike heart.” -Mencius

Do you ever wonder where the simplicity and joy of your childhood went?

In the growing up process, we have replaced the innate wisdom of who we are with fears and doubts. As children there was no doubt that we were great–even invincible. We were inquisitive, adventurous and fearless. Laughter and tears came and went. We didn’t care if we had tears in our pants or dirt on our shirts because we were on a mission to experience as much of life as we could.

Little by little the “don’t, can’t, mustn’t, shouldn’t” eroded our fearlessness and began to create limitations in our world. Slowly these walls began to silence our innate wisdom.

The great news is that you don’t have to stay trapped in these walls. You can rediscover the wisdom you brought into the world and let it play a greater part in your life again. When you do, life will become happier, more creative, and more productive.

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Let life become fun again!

You are perfect.

You were born perfect and still are perfect. Somewhere along the way you were told that you were not good enough, or were made to feel you were not complete–but you are. You think that something is wrong with you that needs to be fixed, but there is nothing to fix.

What you haven’t been told is that you have to accept and love all of you exactly as you are. The warts and the dimples! In doing this you find the perfection that you are.

You are born to greatness.

In the same way that you were born perfect, you were born to greatness. As a child you knew that you were great. You did not know you had limits until someone told you, and even then you challenged those limits. Eventually it became easier to live within the limits. The greatness was stifled within you.

You can reawaken your greatness by replacing your doubts with the belief you can do anything that you set your mind to.

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You know the answers.

You have an innate intelligence within you that knows what is best for you and what you should do at any time. Remember that uneasy feeling that something wasn’t right and later you discovered your feelings were correct? Or the time you just knew you should do something and did. When you saw the success, you chalked it up to a gut feeling.

As a child you trusted in those feelings, but over time the trust faded as your over active mind took over. It is time to trust that gut feeling–your intuition–again. This is the wisdom you came here with.

Life is an adventure.

As a child you were not afraid to try anything. At the merest suggestion you were off to explore, climb, probe, poke or taste most things. If you were like me, you didn’t hesitate before trying something. If you fell or got hurt you didn’t do it again, but it didn’t stop you from the next experience. Life was an adventure to be explored.

This sense of adventure was killed in you when the adults around you repeated, “No, don’t do that! Be careful!” Bring that sense of adventure into your life again. Don’t be afraid to try things, to experience new things, and to explore.

Be honest in all things.

Children are so honest. They tell it like they see it. They say whatever is on their mind. They don’t guard their words, look for reactions, or have expectations. It is all spontaneous.

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When was the last time you said something honestly, without first weighing your words? You can speak with childlike honesty without being cruel or mean. If you start being totally honest with yourself, it becomes easier to be honest with others. At first this will not be easy, but with time you will see the vast benefits.

Be fully in the moment.

Children can be totally engrossed in something to the extent that they are not aware of anything around them. At moments like this, when they are asked to do something else they can get very upset.

For them, only this time and place are relevant. The instant they are no longer engrossed in what they are doing, they easily move on to the next thing. There is fluidity of movement and complete awareness of the moment.

You can recapture this by being mindful of what you are doing at any given time. If you are engrossed in it, keep doing it. If your attention fades it is time to move on. Mindful people tend to be very productive.

We are all equal.

Watch children play. They don’t discriminate against the opposite sex, physical appearance or age. They come together and before long they are playing like long lost buddies. They trust first and welcome all.

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Look at others with the eye of a child and see that everyone is the same under the skin.

It is okay to show emotion.

Children cry, scream, laugh, dance, hop or pound their fists with abandon. They can be raging with anger one moment, and the next be laughing and playing. They move through emotions as they feel them. They don’t hold a grudge, resentment or agonize over what they are feeling. They let it out.

Adults have been taught to hold back emotions or stuff them down. It is time to be honest about how we are feeling. That doesn’t mean you have to lash out at someone, but you can let them know how you are feeling. Open up a dialogue around those feelings and everyone wins.

By rediscovering the wisdom you came into this life with, your world can be more creative, more productive and happier.

Are you ready to reclaim your natural wisdom?

Featured photo credit: Curious/CaseyPicker via flickr.com

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Last Updated on July 23, 2019

5 Steps To Move Out Of Stagnancy In Life

5 Steps To Move Out Of Stagnancy In Life

In the journey of growth, there are times when we grow and excel. We are endlessly driven and hyped up, motivated to get our goals.

Then there are times when we stagnate. We feel uninspired and unmotivated. We keep procrastinating on our plans. More often than not, we get out of a rut, only to get back into another one.

How do you know if you are stagnating? Here are some tell-tale signs:

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  • If you have been experiencing chronic procrastination on your goals
  • If you don’t ever feel like doing anything
  • If you keep turning to sleep, eating, games, mindless activities and entertainment for comfort
  • If you know you should be doing something, but yet you keep avoiding it
  • If you have not achieved anything new or significant now relative to 1 month, 2 months or 3 months ago
  • If you have a deep sense of feeling that you are living under your potential

When we face stagnation in life, it’s a sign of deeper issues. Stagnation, just like procrastination, is a symptom of a problem. It’s easy to beat ourselves over it, but this approach is not going to help. Here, I will share 5 steps to help you move out of this stagnation. They won’t magically transform your life in 1 night (such changes are never permanent because the foundations are not built), but they will help you get the momentum going and help you get back on track.

1. Realize You’re Not Alone

Everyone stagnates at some point or another. You are not alone in this and more importantly, it’s normal. In fact, it’s amazing how many of my clients actually face the same predicament, even though all of them come from different walks of life, are of different ages, and have never crossed paths. Realizing you are not alone in this will make it much easier to deal with this period. By trying to “fight it”, you’re only fighting yourself. Accept this situation, acknowledge it, and tell yourself it’s okay. That way, you can then focus on the constructive steps that will really help you.

2. Find What Inspires You

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Stagnation comes because there isn’t anything that excites you enough to take action. If you don’t have a habit of setting goals, and instead just leave yourself to daily mundanes, it’s not surprising you are experiencing stagnation. What do you want to do if there are no limitations? If you can have whatever you want, what will it be? The answers to these questions will provide the fuel that will drive you forward.

On the other hand, even if you are an experienced goal setter, there are times when the goals you set in the past lose their appeal now. It’s normal and it happens to me too. Sometimes we lose touch with our goals, since we are in a different emotional state compared to when we first set them. Sometimes our priorities change and we no longer want to work on those goals anymore. However, we don’t consciously realize this, and what happens is we procrastinate on our goals until it compounds into a serious problem. If that’s the case for you, it’s time to relook into your goals. There’s no point in pursuing goals that no longer inspire you. Trash away your old goals (or just put them aside) and ask yourself what you really want now. Then go for them.

3. Give Yourself a Break

When’s the last time you took a real break for yourself? 3 months? 6 months? 1 year? Never? Perhaps it’s time to take a time-out. Prolonged working can cause someone to become disillusioned as they lose sight of who they are and what they want.

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Go take some extended leave from work. A few days at bare minimum; a few weeks or months will be great. Some of my ex-colleagues have quit their jobs and took months out to do some self-reflection. Of course, some of us might not have that luxury, so we can stick to a few weeks of leave. Go on a trip elsewhere and get away from your work and your life. Use this chance to get a renewed perspective of life. Think about your life purpose, what you want and what you want to create for your life in the future. These are big questions that require deep thinking over them. It’s not about finding the answers at one go, but about taking the first step to finding the answers.

4. Shake up Your Routines

Being in the same environment, doing the same things over and over again and meeting the same people can make us stagnant. This is especially if the people you spend the most time with are stagnant themselves.

Change things around. Start with simple things, like taking a different route to work and eating something different for breakfast. Have your lunch with different colleagues, colleagues you never talked much with. Work in a different cubicle if your work has free and easy seating. Do something different than your usual for weekday evenings and weekends. Cultivate different habits, like exercising every day, listening to a new series of podcasts every morning to work, reading a book, etc (here’s 6 Proven Ways To Make New Habits Stick). The different contexts will give you different stimulus, which will trigger off different thoughts and actions in you.

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When I’m in a state of stagnancy, I’ll get a sense of what’s making me stagnate. Sometimes it’s the environment I’m in, sometimes it’s the people I’ve been hanging out with, sometimes it’s my lifestyle. Most of the times it’s a combination of all these. Changing them up helps to stir myself out of the stagnant mode.

5. Start with a Small Step

Stagnation also comes from being frozen in fear. Maybe you do want this certain goal, but you aren’t taking action. Are you overwhelmed by the amount of work needed? Are you afraid you will make mistakes? Is the perfectionist in you taking over and paralyzing you?

Let go of the belief that it has to be perfect. Such a belief is a bane, not a boon. It’s precisely from being open to mistakes and errors that you move forward. Break down what’s before you into very very small steps, then take those small steps, a little step at a time. I had a client who had been stagnating for a long period because he was afraid of failing. He didn’t want to make another move where he would make a mistake. However, not wanting to make a mistake has led him to do absolutely nothing for 2-3 years. On the other hand, by doing just something, you would already be making progress, whether it’s a mistake or not. Even if you make a supposed “mistake”,  you get feedback to do things differently in the next step. That’s something you would never have known if you never made a move.

More to Help You Stay Motivated

Here are some resources that will help you break out of your current phase:

Featured photo credit: Anubhav Saxena via unsplash.com

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