What I Am Learning About Happiness From Toddlers

Did you ever notice that kids are naturally happy?  They take those simple moments, something that is completely ordinary and it becomes extraordinary.  For my kids, it would be those moments of tickling, chasing each other, finding a rock in the dirt or riding a bike.  All things that are so simple, but are just happy moments of the day.  It is amazing how a 2-year-old and 3-year-old can spend so much of their day laughing, something as adults we do not do nearly enough.  My young children know how to laugh, forgive, let go, and then move on to being happy again.  Yet as adults, these become hard concepts to fully understand.

I know for me, I have never been someone to walk around smiling for no reason or always laughing.  I would say I am shy, reserved and honestly fearful of judgment.  Having kids has changed some of that for me.  If I see a melt down about to happen and we are in public, sometimes I just need to make a fool of myself and just forget about the judgment of others.  These can turn into happy silly moments. Other moments of happiness I enjoy in silence and I am learning that is okay too.  I just love hearing Buddy say to Mister, “we are a team, lets high five” or hearing the boys laugh as their dad chases them through the house.  Those are happy moments that I am making an effort to notice more.  Over the past few years, my kids have taught me a lot about happiness.  Here is part of my list so far…

1. Children are natually happy and want to be happy.

-Kids want to laugh, play and enjoy life.  We need more of that.

2. Somewhere between being a toddler and an adult, we lose our ability to just let go of worries.

-So many times I have seen my children just move on from an argument, another taking a toy, or feeling left out.  They are    resilient and it is amazing.

3. Young children know how to forgive.

-I have seen my children over and over forgive others throughout the day.  They do not hold on to it and do not form resentments.

4. Happiness is not related to material objects.

-Yes of course my children are happy when they get a new toy.  But what do they want more?  They want mommy or daddy to play with that new toy with them.  It is just simple.  As kids they know happiness comes from enjoying time together.  No material object will replace that time.

5. Happiness is a choice (for the most part) and we need to be present to see that moment of happiness.

-I have seen my children forgive, let go, move on, make relationships, and make something ordinary extraordinary by just being present.  Making a choice to do those things will bring happiness.

These are just a few of the things my children are teaching me about happiness.  What are you being taught?

 

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Choose Happiness,

Jessica Lynn

3 comments

  1. Beth Ann says:

    Great insights! It is amazing what I learn from my kids. Right now they are teaching me to slow down and enjoy what is around me. It is incredible experiencing life through their eyes.

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