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Jerell Parker

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When did we as human beings lose our child like nature? When did we give up on our dreams and goals?

I'm a Senior in High School and I have begun to notice that I'm not as playful as I used to be. I don't joke about stuff and I'm way more serious. Yes I understand this is growing up but do I really have to undergo this process to fit in to main stream society. So my question when did we lose ourselves when did we allow circumstances and people around us to determine who we should be?

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    Oct 11 2011: when we decided to form armys instead of blanket forts?
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    Oct 11 2011: nah, you don't need to undergo that process.
    Just stay playfull... Though losing the energy of your child-years might be logical, and your ability of nuanced thinking will also increase.

    But you don't need to become serious (or take things more serious than they are)...

    For those who do give up their dreams: their bad.
    Go for your (realistic) dreams. reality might be limiting, but within those borders, the possibilities ard endless.
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      Oct 12 2011: How do I stay playful?
      • Oct 12 2011: The TV series, South Park, detailed a situation like yours and offered a solution.

        I believe the miracle elixir is called alcohol.
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        Oct 12 2011: Play games with friends!

        And do silly things once in a while... (not stupid things though).

        Play in real life: see what things you can create with all the pieces that are lying around everywhere (on a metaphoric level, though you can do it literal too).

        Do things that are tons of fun!
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      Oct 13 2011: I agree with Christophe. The question already contains the assumption that we all lost our childhood nature and gave up dreaming...

      Well that makes me an outcast, I am in outer space, with Tee Cee...

      Dreaming is a constant state for me, yet I don't sit still. I think, I tinker with philosophy every now and then, I pray, meditate, and keep aware (the soul is key), I share with friends and strangers alike, I stay informed, I teach, I write, I paint, I play, I laugh, I cry, I love, I find issues (or they find me) and organize solutions... I am.

      Are you? If not, maybe the question should be when did you lose that? (no, I am not a psychiatrist from Manhattan)
  • Oct 17 2011: Jerell, it is wonderful that you are able to see this at your young age, that you are becoming part of this process of life, becoming a responsible adult and seeing that you are possibly leaving behind the best part of life behind: they little joys, the beautiful things that cost nothing. There isn't much that you, or anyone, who is "growing up" --and we do this until the day we die, or even further if you believe in after life-- can do about taking on responsibilities and becoming more serious and adult-like; BUT there is something you can do to keep your inner child living and enjoying life, please remember always what you wrote here, and the different answers you may get, and find they joy and the playfulness we all deserve to have, make it a goal, make it a part of your daily life to find on each day that great side of life and enjoy it! Your dreams don't have to go away, you can develop them or change them, they are yours to do what you wish and desire. Don't be like me, one that waited longer than should to to see that life doesn't need to be only responsibilities and acting all grown up, we all need to embrace the child within.
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    Oct 13 2011: I certainly did. I became a highly responsible adult for many years and lost something important. I got it back when my children were little some of the time and yet I fell back into that old 'responsible' pattern. In order to take back what I think of as our birthright, the joyful interaction with the world, I had to really consider what I wanted my life to be. I first took an art class where I forced myself to be less critical of the product I produced and I really enjoyed it. In the end though, it took the shattering of part of my life and the pattern that I had set for me to truly embrace a new old spirit. The big changes that are happening in my life right now are as a result of choosing joy and meaningful existence over the daily safe choices.
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      Oct 13 2011: But when exactly did you notice that you had changed to a less playful person who was more critical of everyone and everything
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        Oct 16 2011: Hi Jerell, I think it happened to me in chunks and certain events made me less and less playful. I suffered a trauma at about 4 that turned me a serious child who coloured within the lines of life and it made things seem far less optimistic and safe.
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    . . 100+

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    Oct 13 2011: Great question!! While you go through the stages of growing up make sure to protect, love and nurture that inner child. A grown up who has kept their inner child is a kind, constructive and loving person
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    Oct 11 2011: I don't know exactly when but I know exactly what your saying
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      Oct 12 2011: Have you personally taken any steps to counteract this trend?
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        Oct 13 2011: well yes, i talked with a couple of my friends who had little to no goals in life and got them interested in certain subjects.
        Here's my technique to develop life goals: what I do is no matter what activity i'm doing, i make a goal. Therefore I feel accomplished when doing little things, then I get sort of addicted to the feeling of success and then set life goals. Then from there I think of all the good things that could come out of my achievement
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        Oct 14 2011: my pleasure :)
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    Oct 16 2011: May I suggest that you do not give up any of the child like things that are good. Use the creativity and playfulness to balance the load of responsibility of becoming an adult. Try to find humor in as much as you can and share humor with your friends. Remember to set time aside for yourself to smell the chocolate, play meaningless games, lay on your back and find shapes in clouds, and enjoy life. The Celtic Saints say that it is the little things that we do day to day that are important. Find the fun in the little things, get satisfaction when a task is completed and celebrate the completion. It can be a small thing like a bite from your favorite candy bar, a good laugh, a hug from a friend or a pet. Balance is the key to it all and you have to find and set that balance. Remember the big issue today will probably not be a big issue 100 years from now when you are thinking back about your life. Balance work with fun. I strive to do this daily, and moment by moment. Sometimes I am successful and sometimes I fail to one side or the other. As a monk said yesterday is gone and tomorrow is not here so let only the moment be your guide.
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    Oct 12 2011: So how can I keep my playful nature while adjusting to the harsh realities of the world?
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      Oct 13 2011: It seem to me that the more we are held responsible for out actions, the more careful we become about doing anything. We can still be playful or have a good time but in ways that does not take away someone else's comfort or freedom. As we grow up we also find it important how others (specially if we love them) think of us and let that dominate our behaviour (or dress :).
      We can stop playing with Lego but now choose other ways to enjoy technology or nature, depending on how much money we have :)
      But in order to stay playfull you have to decide to stay playfull and not take yourself too seriously. A nice side-effect is you'll be happier and probably live a longer life too :)
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    Oct 11 2011: Teenagers often feel the urge to bore themselves to death. This makes them seem more mature. Is that the issue?
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      Oct 12 2011: I believe this is somewhat true but I don't do it on purpose somethings just bore me.
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    Oct 11 2011: When we ourselves become parents.