Good evening. What do I want to talk about tonight? I should’ve got organized before I started this.
Tonight, I wanted to talk about… Wait for it. Are you ready? Are you ready? This is going to be so exciting. Embracing your inner child. Yes, that’s what I want to talk about.
So why do we want to embrace our inner child? Well, we want to do it because it helps with your creativity and it decreases stress and it gives you a sense of wonder about the world again. Kids look at the world like everything’s exciting. Like everything is exciting. This pen is exciting because it’s got a pink tip. This calculator’s exciting because it’s got buttons in it, and if you push buttons and look at it upside down, you can make words out of it. So it’s awesome.
Embracing your inner child and discovering new things helps with your brain elasticity. We used to think that your brain kind of stopped, but your brain is like this plasticine mold. So you can continue to learn, but you’ve got to do stuff to keep that muscle, that brain power… Very handsy all the time. You’ve got to do things to actually help with that brain elasticity so you can keep learning.
One of the ways to do that is by embracing your inner child, because one of the things you do when you embrace your inner child is also spark your creativity again. We’re all creative. We might not all be creative in the sense of being able to paint or being able to write or sing, but there’s creativity in everybody. Coming up with an idea, like Uber was really bloody creative. All around us there’s some way you can explore your creativity.
The other thing that embracing your inner child also does is really opens up the mind to learning again. You’re kind of like, “Wow.” You look at things with a new lens, which then makes you want to learn something else, which is really cool.
I just wanted to share a few things that, in my manifesto… Which you can actually go to my website, samanthaleith.com, and download. This is like a little manifesto… It is a manifesto. I used to actually have it on the home screen on my phone. It’s very little writing. But stick it up somewhere. It’s really cool.
So one of the things I have in there is… I’ll just go find it. Sing at the traffic lights. That’s kind of what made me think about the whole embracing your inner child thing. Because singing at the traffic lights to We’re the Kids in America really, really loudly, or Oh Mickey, with the windows up and no one can hear you, but people can probably see you going… and knowing you’re having a great time. But you feel really good, and chances are you’ll get out of that car with a little bit of more spark in your step, wanting to have a little bit more fun.
Couple of the other things you could do. Pajama movie night. Honestly, Elodie and I do this. We get every pillow in the house, every blanket, every doona. We put them all out on the floor, we put our PJs on, and we have a movie night. It’s awesome. Okay, it’s not the most comfortable way to sleep all night. I’ll give you that, but it is so much fun.
Make new friends. I talked in my confidence challenge a lot about striking up conversation with a stranger. When was the last time you actually made a new friend? You think about kids, kids go to a park, they come home going, “I’ve got a new best friend.” Kids go to a shopping center, “Mommy, I’ve got a new friend.” Their hearts are open to creating those new friendships. So go make a new friend. That’s fun. That’s really fun.
Do something that you used to do as a kid, like ride a bike or rollerblade. Does anybody rollerblade anymore? I don’t know. Roller skate. Play with a ball. Okay, I’ve got no hand eye coordination, so I’m not playing with a ball. Don’t ever ask me to play tennis. Unless you want to laugh because it is hilarious.
Get wet. As adults, we’ve got our hair, my clothes. I don’t want to get it wet. I don’t want to get it wet. Stand in the rain. Another thing I’ve got in my manifesto is actually swim naked in the rain. That is definitely embracing your inner child and a couple of other things. It’s so much fun to be in there, the rain is just hitting you. Not a hail storm, but just fun rain. It’s awesome.
Turn your phone off. Switch off. To embrace your inner child, you need to switch off. Coloring in is a really good thing. There’s a lot of mindfulness experts who talk about coloring in as a way to actually really get in tune with your mind. I bought a coloring in book to do at night. I didn’t actually find it that helpful. It wasn’t my thing. I was getting too stressed about coloring in the lines because I’m not very artistic in that way. So it wasn’t a thing for me. But for many people, that is really relaxing and lots of fun.
Pick up an old hobby. If there’s something you did at school as a kid that was fun and you haven’t done for 20 years, pick it up again. Go for it. Have fun. So much fun to do.
If you’re in a bad mood, do you know what kids do when they’re in a bad mood or they’re grumpy? They scream. They shout and they scream and they have tantrums. We get taught never to do that in life. But screaming is a really, really good way to get your emotions out. So if you’re having a bit of a funk of a day, grab a pillow or go… I’ve got a tea towel here. Or go somewhere where it’s peaceful and quiet, or really noisy was the other option, and no one’s going to ring the police on you, and scream. Feels good. It actually feels good.
Another one, dance. I know Elodie and I quite often put the music on really loudly at home. When she was little, I’d stand her up on a coffee table and I’d hold her hands and we danced and we carry on. Especially when we were Halloween or Christmas decorations. Sometimes she’d have friends come over and they’d be watching us sing and dance to Christmas carols thinking, “Oh my gosh, that’s right. Elodie’s mother is a complete fruit loop.” I don’t care. It is fun. Turn up the music and dance at home, people. It’s really good.
Another one, when was the last time… Again, this is something I’m not very good at, but I do try. Lie on the grass outside and look up at the clouds and make patterns out of them. Try and find Mickey Mouse. Create all those pictures in the clouds. Kids could do that for hours and it just… When you channel your thoughts into something like that, you let go of all that other stuff you’ve been hanging on to. Then when you have to switch back into work mode or parenting mode or business mode or teacher mode, you’re a lot more relaxed. It is a much better way to go into something.
Another one which is lots of fun, there’s two actually that I’ve got if you’re in a car. But be really careful. I’m not advocating bad driving. This is just two fun things to do. If it’s safe and reasonable, when there’s a really, really big puddle on the side of the road, drive your car through it and make the biggest splash you can. That is hilariously fun. The other one is when you’re going to a roundabout and there’s no… Or maybe I shouldn’t say this one. I don’t know. Might get in trouble with the police. Go round and round the roundabout. Go around. That’s lots of fun.
Go to a park even if you don’t have a child. Okay? Don’t be weird about it. But go to a park and get on a swing. Get that mother up as far as you can and you’re holding on and you’re like, “I’m going to die. I’m going to die. I’m going to fall off.” But do it. It is so much fun.
What was the other one I wanted to talk about? Make an occasion. Make a special occasion about something really boring as batshit. Kids can turn a visit to something really boring into something fun just by playfulness. Embracing that playfulness inside all of us just opens up potential with creativity, with learning, with de-stressing, mindfulness, all those things, just opens up those pathways.
So my challenge for you tonight is tomorrow, even if you don’t have Minnie Mouse ears, go and do something to completely embrace your inner childhood. Even if it’s making pancakes tomorrow morning. Separating the pancake mix into different bowls and putting a little bit of color in each, and having colorful pancakes for breakfast. Heaps of fun. So tomorrow that’s your thing you’ve got to do.
Go and do something really childlike because it will spark your creativity, de-stress you, and go, “Woo,” much better day. Have a great night.