Cultivating a Sense of Wonder for a Lifetime
It is amazing what our children can teach us.
This morning my youngest kept pointing at the flowers outside from the breakfast table, "Fwower? Fwower?". So, we decided to go get dressed and head out to get some sunshine. As I was watching my girls explore the yard and newly bloomed roses, my heart became filled with joy. A spark of a smile struck across my face seeing the curiosity in their eyes, the joy in their smiles and giggles of delight as the petals tickled their noses. I leaned back and thought "Ah, to be a child again.." then it hit me...
Cultivating a sense of wonder in our children is so important! So how do we do it?
After mulling it over in my mind, here are
4 ways to cultivate a sense of wonder in your child's life - for their whole life.
1. Experience Nature
Nothing quite sparks wonder like the outdoors! There are endless things to explore. Prioritize taking your little ones to a park, beach, farm. The word sense of wonder is used because our "senses" are involved - so let them jump in puddles! Let them pick the flowers! Let them get their hands dirty! Let them play in the rain.
2. Slow down
It is hard to marvel at life when you are too busy to even notice what is around you! Take time out every day and slow down so you can open the door for wonder.
3. Notice the small things
Wonder does not always have to be in something grandiose. There is beauty all around us, some things just take a little effort to notice.
4. Be an example
This is perhaps the most powerful.
You may familiar with Lee Ann Womack's "I Hope You Dance" - if not, the song kicks off with a beautiful line: "I hope you never lose your sense of wonder...". The phrase is beautiful and often a desire parents have for their children. We become reminiscent at their marvel and never want them to lose their wonder - but what about us? Have we lost ours? I am a firm believer in parenting by example so this got my gears turning.
I thought about it for a moment and realized that somewhere along this journey of life - many of us could easily have this sense of wonder dulled or even lose it completely. It is too easy - we can become busy, jaded and after living for a while it may be easy to feel like we've "seen it all".
So - how can we be examples?
First, we need to know what it means. According to Google, word "cultivate" means to try to acquire or develop (a quality, sentiment, or skill) and the word "wonder" means a feeling of surprise mingled with admiration, caused by something beautiful, unexpected, unfamiliar, or inexplicable.
Here are a few ideas:
- Have fun while doing chores - pump up the music and let them see you jam out while sweeping
- Be fully engaged in playing with your children - get creative, be silly
- Be a life learner - take a class, a workshop, read a book
- Ask questions - show your child that there are always things to learn, always beauty to be marveled at.
- Embrace change - nothing in nature blooms all year
- Express surprise or excitement about the world and its happenings - think about the ever changing sunsets, the crisp feel of a breeze..
- Talk about beauty of every day with your children - show them how to enjoy the simple things in life
If you are interested in hiring me to document you and your child enjoying the beauty and wonder of life, please feel free to contact me! I would love to plan out a fun hour or two with you.