Babies sure have it right!
Have you ever taken the time to watch a baby? I mean really just sit there and watch them. It is incredible how they instinctively interact with the world. The simplicity of how they deal with everything that is going on around them is inspirational, to say the least.
There is so much that we can learn from them if we just sit back and watch. All the lessons they provide would fill a book, but today I’ll just stick to one big one that inspires me.
Baby’s Just Love To Live In The Moment!
After a moment passes, they don’t seem to care or particularly remember what has happened in the past, even if that past is as recent as a few minutes ago. They also don’t seem to care about what is going to happen later, especially years later, or even a few minutes later.
All they are interested in is what is happening in their lives then and there, in the instant moment.
Think about that.
What a gift! What a lesson!
Adults think we know better about everything, but do we really? Perhaps the truth is that we just don’t think about things, we obsess about them.
Most people spend so much energy on unimportant and inconsequential things, and we stress ourselves out so much over what has happened to us or around us in the past. Then sadly, without the slightest thought, we can carry those feelings or burdens on into our future, and allow those experiences to affect us for a very long time.
It could be days, months, years and even decades before we ever get over some things that we experience. Many times we don’t even get over them at all. In some cases of pure tragedy, that may be understandable, but in most other situations it is just a waste of time and energy.
Sadly, many people just take those negative feeling and experiences with them to the grave.
When that happens relationships get destroyed, families tear apart, depression sets in, and we become apathetic. Sometimes things can get even worse. And all this from just holding onto negative experiences and not letting things go.
It’s unfortunate and sad, but understandable in many cases.
But Babies Typically Don’t Do That, Do They?
Think about this: If we, as adults, feel wronged by someone or something, most of us tend to keep thinking and obsessing about it. We end up analyzing and complaining about the experience, internalize and express our frustration about it. We tell everyone around us about it and draw them into our swirling anger, until the experiences totally stresses us out, and them. I guess misery does love company.
Sometimes it even gets to the point where it can make us physically ill. Who wants that?
Now, that’s not a good thing, is it?
By stewing over things, any chance of our being able to enjoy the good stuff going on around us at the moment, no matter how great or how special that thing might be, can be destroyed. Even worse, it can affect relationships with loved ones.
How many times is someone in a situation where they are having a wonderful dinner with their loving family, only to find themselves thinking about something as silly and meaningless as the person who cut them off in traffic hours or days ago?
What a waste. What a shame.
Here’s another perfect example.
Let’s take another specific, simple scenario and try to see how a baby versus an adult might react and handle a very similar situation.
Let’s say, for example, that somebody raises their voice at us, or even yells at us as loudly as they can, in public. It could be a stranger or it could be someone we know or it could even be someone we are related to.
That would probably upset anyone, right? After all, we are all human and we all deserve respect from others, right? I would agree with that statement.
But now let’s take a closer look at this example. Let’s start with what an adult might typically do in this situation?
An adult might yell back . . .
An adult might ignore them. . .
An adult might get frustrated and angry inside. . .
An adult might complain to someone on the spot, a supervisor perhaps. . .
An adult might complain to someone later on, a spouse or friend maybe. . .
An adult might lose sleep over how badly we perceive we were treated or disrespected. . .
An adult may look or wait for an opportunity to get back at the person, or embarrass them later when the opportunity presents itself. . .
These are all possible responses an adult might employ to someone yelling at them. And if we are being honest here, these are all things that all of us have probably done at one time or another in a similar situation.
Now, Let’s Take A Look At How A Baby Would Respond To A Similar Situation Of Being Yelled At By Someone.
There’s a good chance that the baby may be upset in the moment. It may even cry if the yelling is loud or startling enough.
But a moment later it is all over for them. Let it be!
The baby just moves on to the next thing. They don’t worry about it later that day, let alone later that week. For them it is in the past and it cannot be changed. They don’t worry about how it is going to affect them in the future because they are busy thinking about right now. They can deal with the future when it comes.
No, they just live in the moment, in the here and now!
How Enlightening Is That?
Take a moment here to think about the differences above between how an adult and a baby may respond to this situation. There is not that much energy or stress involved for the baby in that example, is there? Nothing interferes with their enjoyment of that instant moment.
Sounds like a pretty good way to deal with the situation, doesn’t it?
Both the adult and the baby went through the same or similar circumstances, but who dealt with it better? Who moved on faster? Who is more content with the result? Who has the better experience afterwards?
It’s not hard to figure out that it is the baby, is it?
Living in the moment.
For years I had heard about the idea of just living in the moment. And for those same number of years it seemed like a foreign concept to me. We’re adults after all, we think, we experience emotions, we ‘fix’ things, we share our experiences with those around us, right?
Every personal growth program that I listened to or read about had something in there about it. But the true simplicity of it and the absolute beauty of it didn’t hit me until I saw how a baby dealt with these very same circumstances and situations.
It just hit me like a ton of bricks!
What is it about getting “older and wiser” (insert sarcasm here!) that makes adults think that the lessons and the way that we behaved as babies was not the right way for adults to deal with similar things?
Where did we come up with the concept that we had to continually deal with, hyper-analyze and stress over situations that we find ourselves in?
When did we decide that it was better to live in the past and destroy our enjoyment of the present and the future before it even arrived?
When and how did that happen?
Try this . . .
Take a moment to think the next time you find yourself carrying some old baggage from the past into your present or future.
Realize that it is just that, your past.
Or when you are worrying about something in the future that you really have no control over, literally stop yourself in the moment. Check yourself. See and feel what you are doing. And then actively decide to not let the past taint your future.
Take a second and just be a baby about it, and see how much you begin to enjoy what is going on around you right in that moment.
Remember, it’s OK to be a baby sometimes! And we sure can learn a lot from them!
Think about it and let me know what you think . . .