In a lot of stories, we can sometimes see children and their childlike characteristics being praised: light-heartedness, curiosity, humbleness, etc. Of course, in reality there’re some childish characteristic that are not really praise worthy that are usually attributed to kids: egoistical, naivety, recklessness, etc.
However, are we really sure that only children have the characteristics above? In fact, we all do exhibit the characteristics above some of the time. We all have a child version of ourselves and it shows up from time to time. And, it’s OK. In fact, we probably shouldn’t try to get rid of it entirely from ourselves. We probably should have eternal children at our heart for all eternity.
However, by keeping our eternal children, won’t we inevitably show the childish characteristics above? Well, there’s a way to keep the eternal child and not be childish. But, before that, we need to make loaded definitions.
- Childish: bad and annoying characteristics of children. E.g. blaming other people for your own fault.
- Childish: showing the characteristics of children (good or bad) in an annoying way. E.g. being too curious that you violate the privacy of other people, such as when kids stares at our phone while we’re texting. Pretty annoying, isn’t it?
- Childlike: good and lovable characteristics of children. E.g. eager to play with other friendly people regardless of skin color, social status, wealth, etc.
- Childlike: showing the characteristics of children (good or bad) in a lovable way. E.g. being a bit egoistical while expressing it in a controlled way, such as when your cute girlfriend become a little bit jealous when you smile at other girl, but instead of throwing temper tantrum, she just pouts for a few seconds. Maybe a bit exasperating, but still cute, isn’t it?
The whole point of this post is this: when we express our eternal child by only showing childlike behaviors while avoiding childish behaviors, not only do we express the eternal child in the healthiest way possible, we’ll also be more mature and lovable in the eyes of other people.
Healthy expression of the eternal child means that we don’t repress the child side of ourselves, but we don’t become less mature or more annoying by indulging our childishness habitually when we express the eternal children side of ourselves.
Beware that if you follow the main point of this post, other people will view you as an adorable, lovable, cute person; and they’ll treat you as such (they’ll adore and love you more just like the cute person you are). If you don’t want to be treated as such, or if you want to only get such treatment in moderation, you’d probably need to express your eternal child in moderation.