Remember how simple things were as a child? When your biggest concern was whether you’d get to go to the park that day? Or whether your grandparents would come over and spoil you with sweets and presents?
Now compare this to adult life. With all its responsibilities, expectations, and demands. The stress and anxiety we experience on a daily basis surrounding our work, personal lives, and decision making.
It couldn’t be a starker contrast.
A childhood free of reasoning
There is no such thing as ‘because’ when you’re four years old. There is just being. You look around the room you’re in, find things to play with, and play with them. You enjoy sitting in a cardboard box for no reason other than because it’s there and you can.
You don’t think “why am I sitting here?” You just sit there, and that’s it. Much like a dog doesn’t question why they’re rolling around in mud, other than that it feels quite nice to do so.
In this sense, as children, we’re able to just be. Nothing has this hidden agenda or big reasoning behind it. We’re not stuck in the past or worried about the future. We exist in the present moment and behave in whatever way feels right at the time. Things are simple, easy, and straightforward.
Things are so much easier before ‘because’ comes into the picture.
When ‘because’ takes over
And then, all of a sudden, ‘because’ enters our lives. We stop doing things just for the sake of it and everything starts needing a larger reason or motivation behind it.
Why are you waking up? Because I have to go to work.
Why are you eating? Because I’m hungry.
Slowly, the things that drive, influence, or force you to act in certain ways come into your life. They become the motivations behind everything you do. You can no longer approach your thoughts and behaviours with the carefree abandon we associate with childhood. Everything becomes part of a bigger picture.
Once ‘because’ exists, life becomes exponentially more complicated.
In an increasingly fast-paced world, we’re moving faster and connecting quicker than ever. We’re always looking ahead to the next thing, wanting to make progress. We’re increasingly tactical and intentional in our behaviours, choices, and actions. Doing A will get me to B. Cause and effect.
We’re driven by ‘because’. Because we want to start a family. Because we want a promotion at work. Because we want to buy our dream house in the next five years.
Taking a step back
And just like that, once we grow up, just being is something we so rarely do. Sitting in a cardboard box, just because it seemed like a good idea at the time, feels nothing more than a distant memory.
Once ‘because’ enters your life, it becomes a persistent presence over your actions and choices. But it’s important we’re able to step aside from our ‘becauses’ every once in a while.
As only when we take a step back from the bigger picture and live in the present moment can we truly be peaceful. Once we remove the shackles of past and future. It’s a form of mindfulness that allows us to switch off from all adult responsibilities and expectations. It enables us to be wholly, completely present. To return to that blissful childlike state where we did whatever we wanted without a second thought or deeper meaning. A freeing, empowering moment of calm and separation.
All of us will have our own reasons behind our actions, behaviours, and decisions. The ‘becauses’ that drive us forward and decide the path we follow. But, equally important, we all need to be able to step away from this bigger picture. To check in with ourselves and switch off from the constantly spinning merry-go-round we call life.
As a mindset coach, I help my clients take better ownership of their lives. To rid them of the past experiences, anxieties, and fears that currently hold them back. And help them forge a path towards a more authentic, fulfilling, and self-aware future. If you’re interested in working together, get in touch to schedule a conversation with me here.