I have always loved working with children; whether I was volunteering at a daycare in the summer or babysitting for family friends. I love watching them explore and learn new things about the world around them. It’s rewarding to watch these little humans absorb all kinds of new knowledge each day and truly grow as people. But after spending countless hours working with these energetic, happy go lucky little munchkins, I have learned that all of us adults can learn a thing or two from toddlers.
Say "I love you" and mean it.
There’s a huge difference between being “in love” with someone and simply loving someone. So don’t be afraid to tell the people that mean the most to you that you love and appreciate them.
Pick blades of grass and throw them up in the air like confetti.
It never gets old, I promise.
Comfort the person who is crying by making them laugh.
Don’t let your friends host their own pity parties.
Make a silly face or tell a stupid joke
Anything to get their mind off of whatever is bothering them.
Jump in the puddles and don’t worry about soaking your clothes.
Again, I swear that this never gets old.
Get angry, throw a tantrum and then get over it.
The thing that I admire the most about toddlers is their ability to forgive and forget (or to simply just forget). Let go of the grudges, release the tension and allow for the pain to gradually subside. Once you stop bottling up all of your emotions and just let it out, you will feel a hell of lot better.
Being serious all the time is overrated.
It’s true, there’s a time and place to be silly and crazy. But never allow yourself to get weighed down by all of life’s stressors. Time flies too quickly so live life to its fullest every single day.
Hug your best friend every day.
Make the important people in your life feel special every chance that you get.
Just say what you mean and for crying out loud, stop beating around the bush.
Get to the point. Cut to the chase. Toddlers don’t worry about what other people are going to think, they just share what’s on their mind.
Boys can wear princess crowns and girls can race toy cars.
Toddlers are lucky to live their lives with little acknowledgement or recognition of the gender norms and stereotypes that exist in society. Just be who you are, like what you like and do what makes you happy. When it comes down to it, no one should dictate how you lead your live other than you.
Sometimes, toddlers give the best advice because they are not trying to be insightful but rather, they are just giving an honest opinion.
Toddlers aren’t weighed down by all of the complexities and the intricacies of society; they see the world and their environment in the simplest of terms. Toddlers aren’t afraid to dream, to believe in the impossible, and to say and do what makes them happy regardless of what others might think.
So what exactly did I learn from a two year old? Apparently, zebras can growl and bark and sometimes even “moo.” The food at snack time is for wearing, not eating. Sippy cups are more suitable as toys to roll across the floor than as things to drink liquids from. But above all else, I learned that the worst mistake you can make in life is taking the beauty of childhood for granted.