I love that endless enthusiasm and Go Get ‘Em energy that children have.
Think about when you were 5 years old. That age when you thought anything was possible. Want to be an astronaut? Go for it! Become a professor? Let’s do this! You want to be a dinosaur, a Tyrannosaurus Rex perhaps?? Alright, let’s go!!
If you think about it, children are less susceptible to fear. Ever climbed up a tree? Did you ever slip and graze your arm? But you got right back up again, didn’t you, and climbed that tree all over again because it was fun and one fall was not going to stop you, right?
Actually that’s never happened to me either. I’ve been told I missed out on a vital part of childhood because I never climbed up a tree as a kid. I did, however, make up for it a few years ago and officially gained my tree-climber’s badge And last week, I achieved Tree Climber Level 2 – which involved swinging off a branch and landing on the ground. It was a little scarier than I had imagined but once I got into the swing of things (no pun intended), I actually ended up doing it over and over again.
But here is my point. Most kids probably wouldn’t have been scared like I was, even on their first go. They’d just think “Cool, a tree! I want to climb it! Then jump off it!”… and they could do it without any doubts. And despite me also having the “Tree! Climb! Jump!” desire inside of me, I found myself slightly overthinking it – What if I fell? What if I hurt myself?
But once I got through that first jump, I realised it wasn’t that bad after all. In fact, I wanted to do it again. I wanted to climb higher. Jump further. Do a Splinter Cell style climb-across-the-branch manouvre and land like a stealth expert. (Though I probably was not quite that graceful! )
It was a LOT of fun.
And I realised… I could do with adopting a child-like attitude to a lot of things in life. Whilst I was busy sitting on a branch, over-analysing the potential ‘what if’ scenarios that could unfold, a child would have happily went for it! A child doesn’t think about fear, they only think of what they feel like doing.
If this were a race, the child would be far far ahead while I’m still hesitating at the start line.
Don’t overthink it. Don’t let fear rule you. Even if I fell, I probably would’ve been okay. — If you want to try it, then do it!
Further to my point, many of us probably did fall out of a tree at some point. But for most part, we’re still okay after it. Then we try again because climbing trees is pretty fun – and sometimes falling is just part of that fun.
Maybe we should be more like children – forget about the ‘what ifs’ and play to our heart’s desire!
Me: Trees are really fun, aren’t they?
Mum: (laughs) Yes, trees are really fun!