How to Harness Your Inner Child and Why It’s Important

kid with pretend rocket pack on his or her back with arm pointing to the sky - how to harness your inner child

Growing older can be a bit if a drag at times. Responsibilities can take its toll and suck the fun out of life. Before we know it, that energetic kid inside of us becomes buried underneath work schedules, parenting activities, and household chores. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to rid yourself of these burdens and harness your inner child once again? The good news is that you can! And research shows that if you harness your inner child, you will ultimately be healthier and happier.

Science Shows Those Who Feel Younger Are Healthier

Acting more like a kid can actually make you feel younger.  In fact, research has shown that if you harness your inner child, you may live longer.  In one study that surveyed 6,500 people, researchers asked whether they felt younger, the same, or older than their age. Interestingly, the researchers found that those who felt younger than their age were more likely to live longer. This is a great incentive to harness your inner child!

]Other studies have also shown a “Benjamin Button” effect between youthfulness and aging. In one study, several older men were asked to immerse themselves back in the 1950s. For several days, they stayed in a house decked out in 1950’s memorabilia and décor. The researchers found that after a little time, the men had better hearing, better memory, and greater energy levels. In fact, they even looked younger! Being youthful appears to be clearly linked to health and wellness.

How Youthfulness Improves Your Health

When it comes to your health and happiness, youthfulness is a self-fulfilling prophecy. In other words, when you harness your inner child, you evoke changes that improve your health. Consider how youthfulness helps you physically. When you harness your inner child, you naturally have more energy. When you are more energetic, you tend to exercise more and make better diet choices. Also, barriers to new activities subside because you feel physically better.

When you harness your inner child, you also enjoy a more youthful mindset. Changes in your routine are less daunting the more youthful you feel. Instead of resisting change, you see new things with a sense of wonder and curiosity. As you tackle new challenges, you grow more confident in the process. And when you embrace a greater sense of youthfulness, you become mentally more resilient and focused. All of these reinforce your desire to harness your inner child further.

Embracing youthfulness also improves your social and emotional health. After all, who wouldn’t want to be around someone happy, positive and energetic? When you harness your inner child, you tend to laugh, smile, and interact with others more. Naturally, they will be more likely to react to you in a positive way in return. Without even trying, you expand your circle of friends and feel more positive about yourself. Being young at heart is good for both your heart and your soul.

4 Activities to Help You Harness Your Inner Child

girl wearing yellow rain boots jumping in puddle

Sometimes, the ability to harness your inner child may be difficult. Responsibilities can get in the way, and opportunities to act like a kid may not be plentiful. Never fear! Here are some great ways for you to free the inner child within you.

1. Try New Things

Maintaining a sense of youthfulness means constantly trying new things. In other words, use it or lose it. Learn a new language, figure out the latest technology, travel to a foreign country, or sign up for community volleyball. This will help you keep that sense of wonder and help you feel younger.

2. Diversify Your Friends

It might be hard to harness your inner child when surrounded by others who have no interest in pursuing youthfulness. One great way to embrace youthfulness is to expand your circle of friends. Get to know people who are younger, from different cultures, and see the world differently. By constantly expanding your mind to new ideas, you cannot help but be more youthful.

3. Dress with Flare

A great way to harness your inner child is to explore new fashions and styles. Be expressive and showcase your creative side. Get a new haircut. Put some color in your wardrobe. Make your style playful and fun, and you will naturally feel more youthful.

4. Have Fun!

Above all else, kids want to have fun, and so should you! Listen to new music, learn to dance, splash in puddles, laugh out loud. Being young at heart means always looking to find pleasure in whatever you’re doing. Keep your focus on fun, and you will harness your inner child much more often.

Staying Young, Staying Healthy

In the words of George Bernard Shaw, “We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” When you harness your inner child, you invite a fun attitude and a sense of wonder. The youthfulness that results rewards you in so many ways. Life is short enough, and there is no need to make it shorter. Embrace the kid inside you. You will not only be more likely to live a longer life but one that is also filled with joy.

About the Author

Dawna is a mom of two young kids, puppy lover, ice cream lover, chocolate lover, and lover of any ice cream with chunks of chocolate in it. She is the author of seven books, a business owner, certified health coach, motivational speaker, and creator of the 5-Day Detox and the 14-Day Clean-Eating Program. Dawna appears regularly on local and national television. She has appeared on the Today show, Martha, MSNBC, HSN, and morning news programs on NBC, CBS, ABC, and Fox. Dawna is a highly sought-after speaker and has done speaking engagements for Chobani, Disney, American Heart Association, Mass Mutual, Wharton Business School, Women’s Entertainment Television, PGA Tour, Super Bowl Leadership Forum, Susan G. Komen, and many more.
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