Toddlers. The tiny humans who keep our lives exciting, stressful, exhausting, and just plain busy! They have the ability to melt our hearts and make us burst into tears all in a matter of minutes. Let’s face it: when you’re in the toddler trenches, it can seem like you’re slowly losing your mind. Every parent has been there!
The toddler years are turbulent, tricky, tender, and totally unpredictable. But these years also offer parents a wealth of new knowledge and experiences. And we aren’t just talking about finding new ways of handling a temper tantrum in the middle of the grocery store! Toddlers provide a fresh outlook on life altogether. The rules and logic they follow, their reactions to different situations, and their fun-loving innocence make them ideal little models for living a happier life.
We know what you’re thinking: they’re toddlers. They don’t have a care in the world, besides their next meal and activity. And while that may be true, there is more to a toddler’s lifestyle than meets the eye! Here are 15 different ways you can live your life like a toddler. Some silly and some actually pretty insightful. And maybe—just maybe—they’ll help us adults live easier, smoother, and most importantly, happier lives.
1. Toddlers learn something new every day.
Our little ones are little sponges. Each day, they take on the world ready to learn something brand new. The best part? Their genuine open-mindedness. When it comes to things they’ve never seen, touched, or experienced before, toddlers are interested in just about anything. And they almost always try before making a snap judgement. (Except, maybe, when it comes to vegetables.) If adults embraced this open-minded attitude just a little more each day, we’d all live in a much more tolerant and enjoyable world—not to mention more fun!
2. Toddlers are curious.
Ok, curious may be an understatement. A toddler’s curiosity is the reason many of us moms have grey hair (shout-out to root touch-up kits!). But their curiosity is also admirable. Toddlers are so eager to learn and experience. They never shy away from something that is unfamiliar. Quite the opposite, actually. They tend to run to the unfamiliar. Eagerness and curiosity: life lessons from our little ones.
3. Toddlers have a big presence.
Tiny humans, BIG presence. Toddlers have no problem making their presence known. We have to hand it to them, they rarely go unnoticed. (If they’re quiet, that probably means they’re up to something). If we channeled our toddler state of mind a little more often, we may find ourselves with more self-confidence than we know what to do with. We could all use a little self-boost now and then!
4. Toddlers forgive quickly.
No matter what happens, a toddler doesn’t hold a grudge (unless they’re on time-out for longer than 5 minutes. Then you may have a grudge on your hands.) They forgive, forget, and move on without a thought. Although it’s much easier said than done, we would be a lot happier and less stressed if we learned how to forgive quickly.
5. Toddlers know how to stand up for themselves.
There’s no doubt that toddlers know how to say “NO!” Some may even argue that it’s their favorite word. As parents, a headstrong toddler usually means a couple unbearable temper tantrums. But as adults, there’s a lesson to be learned. How often have you been anxious or even afraid to stand up for yourself? Chances are, it’s happened more than you’d care to admit. You’re not alone! Next time you find yourself in a tough situation, channel your inner 2-year-old. (Although, we don’t recommend throwing a temper tantrum at your age. Unfortunately, those are frowned upon).
6. Toddlers appreciate the little things.
Give a toddler a present and he or she will play with the box and wrapping paper long before the gift itself. They find joy in the simple things in life. A refreshing reminder we could all use once in a while.
7. Toddlers are tough little troopers.
Toddlers trip, fall, bonk, stub, tip over, and stumble their way through each day. They get hurt and there may be tears. But afterwards, they pick themselves up, brush themselves off, and keep on going! They don’t let little setbacks ruin their whole day of new adventures. Next time you stumble, don’t just think tough. Think toddler tough. You’ll be sure to push through any obstacle life wants to throw at you!
8. Toddlers love spontaneity.
Toddlers are always up for a new, spontaneous adventure, even if it’s as simple as moving from the sandbox to the playground. They don’t worry about a plan (that’s your job, Mom and Dad!) and hop from one activity to the next with a smile. As adults, of course, we have to plan. We can’t fly by the seat of our pants every day, although some of us would love to. But every once in a while, do something spur-of-the-moment. It’s exciting and will shake up your daily routine.
9. Toddlers laugh. A lot.
If we could learn to laugh half as much and half as hard as toddlers do every day, we would be very happy campers. Toddlers don’t hold back; neither should you! Laughing is good for the soul. Let it out!
10. Toddlers never slow down.
Isn’t that the truth!? Toddlers are fast and they never stop moving. They keep themselves busy and entertained almost constantly (and when they can’t, they have someone do it for them). More importantly, when a toddler isn’t content doing something, he or she switches it up. Now, as adults, we unfortunately have to do things we don’t want to do. We don’t have the toddler luxury of choosing only what we’d like to do. But we can learn from their fast-paced, exciting lifestyle. When you are interested in something, don’t slow down. Dive right in!
11. Toddlers make their own fun.
How many times have you caught your toddler playing with a stick or your car keys or the shoe by the back door? Toddlers don’t need toys to have a good time. With their imaginations and curiosity, they make fun out of anything. And we mean anything. Their creativity is inspiring.
12. Toddlers make themselves heard.
Toddlers are loud and proud. They don’t hold back their opinions, even if they can’t articulate them fully in English. They’re certainly not afraid to speak up and you shouldn’t be either!
13. Toddlers rarely give up easily.
This goes back to toddlers’ abilities to stand up for themselves and make themselves heard. They sure are stubborn sometimes (and this stubbornness accounts for a parent’s daily dose of stress and frustration). But we have to hand it to them! When a toddler knows what he wants, he won’t give up until he has it—or at least has a compromise. As adults, we encounter almost too many situations where we feel like a doormat. Sometimes, it’s easier to give in and pick your battles. Other times, however, it’s important to stand your ground. Take it from your toddler…it certainly works for them!
14. Toddlers embrace messes.
Toddlers don’t see a mess; they see a creative space! Whether it’s your kitchen, the playroom, your office, or your life, it’s easy to get bogged down by a mess. Next time you find yourself stressing, think of your little one and their perspective. Your space isn’t messy; it’s well-loved!
15. Toddlers love unconditionally.
A toddler’s love is so genuine. They are affectionate, caring, and give the best hugs you could ever ask for! They stop in the middle of their activities just to give you a sloppy kiss or sit in your lap. Ultimately, toddlers put love first. And so should we.