My son, Joe, says that life is not complicated. People make it so. I think of his words when I’m running around doing all sorts of things that really don’t need to be done. And spending time with my seven-month-old grandsons reinforces Joe’s words.
We adults are a stressed-out bunch, most of which is our own doing. We can learn a lot from babies. They enjoy life on a basic level. Here are some of the things babies can teach us:
Enjoy the little things. Parents spend a good part of their time removing non-toys from the grasp of little hands. Babies laugh at and enjoy the simplest things. They don’t need expensive clothes, toys, or homes to make them happy, and neither do we.
We don’t need much. A baby’s physical requirements are pretty basic, and ours really aren’t much different.
Love. The most important thing babies want is love. It’s the greatest gift we can give our children and each other.
Happy people make us happy. Babies mirror our emotions. If we frown, they frown. If we smile, they smile. Surrounding ourselves with happy people will make us happier too.
Naps are rejuvenating. A little cat-nap, especially when we are very tired, helps us feel better and be more productive the rest of the day.
Overstimulation is exhausting. Babies melt-down when overstimulated, and that doesn’t change much when we become adults. Most of us immerse ourselves in a mix of intense activity, electronics and people, all of which tires our minds and bodies. We then wonder why we are irritable and ill.
Use your senses. Babies experience life through their senses. They touch, smell, taste, and look at everything. If we take a moment to enjoy things sensually we will appreciate so much more.
A little attention heals boo-boos. When a child falls, we pick them up and kiss their hurt. That immediate, gentle response goes a long way with adults as well.
View life through the eyes of a child. Everything is exciting when viewed through a baby’s eyes. We enjoy experiencing things with a baby in tow because we want to witness their excitement in seeing things for the first time. They help us to remember and appreciate everything once again.
Release your fears and trust all will be well. Babies trust that their needs will be met. Life is so much easier when we aren’t cynical or worried about the terrible things that aren’t likely to ever happen.
©2013, Mary K. Doyle