When is the last time you were truly inspired, enchanted or swept off your feet? A commonly shared plight in adulthood is finding new and exciting ways to experience the world around us. Daily routines become mundane, making it all too easy to lose our sense of curiosity and wonder. Spontaneous adventures may not show up as often as they once did in a childhood with seemingly endless hours of free time. Taking a step back to spark that sense of magic energizes our spirit to cultivate a positive outlook filled with endless possibilities.
Here are some suggestions on how to implement this shift in mindset:
1. Take photographs in nature.
Visit a flowing waterfall, vast mountain range or charming bridge overlooking a babbling brook. Even taking a close-up shot of the leaves from a potted plant, a raindrop on the windowsill or feather floating by can help us see the intricate beauty of nature, providing the gift of a fresh perspective.
2. Catch fireflies, lady bugs, butterflies (temporarily and let them go).
Get a clear view of these complex creatures and marvel at their structure, design and movements.
3. Set up an impromptu art studio at home and paint on large sheets of paper.
Create a beautiful masterpiece with vibrant sidewalk chalk outdoors. Use bright colors and create big, bold designs. Experiment with mixed media, like marble painting, collages or even glitter. Youâre never too old to be creative, even if you donât end up displaying the finished product. Looking for a more compact alternative? Try an adult coloring book!
4. Watch a kidâs movie.
Disney movies and silly cartoons arenât just for children. Thereâs lots of adult humor and artistic wit to be enjoyed in entertainment typically geared towards kids, regardless of your age. Put on an old favorite or watch something youâve never seen before. Head to an IMAX theatre or 3D movie to fully immersive yourself in an experience that transports you to a fantasy world, even if only for a couple of hours.
5. Record your dreams.
Let your mind wander and explore your daydreams beyond just the confines of your daily to-do list. Keep a dream journal to get in touch with wherever your subconscious travels to when youâre asleep.
6. Get outside and see the stars.
Thereâs something undeniably inspiring and magical about the vast night sky. Twinkling stars and constellations serve as a reminder of the infinite universe around us. Stay up late and get outside to marvel at the beauty of the Milky Way.
7. Read a classic fairytale or romantic novel.
Old tales from the Brothers Grimm are not for the faint of heart. These stories written in the 1800s are much darker versions of the later recreated stories of Cinderella and Snow White. For something a little less creepy and dark, consider a fun, magical adult-friendly childrenâs book, like Harry Potter, Alice in Wonderland or A Wrinkle in Time. If youâre in the mood for a true fairy-tale ending, dive into a romance novel. Reading should be fun, so choose something that you enjoy without worrying about what others may think.
8. Indulge in an ice cream float or a sundae.
Although adults know all too well the importance of eating a healthy balanced diet, sometimes itâs fun to just break the rules and treat yourself. Feel like a kid again with the sweets you once loved. Have a hot chocolate with marshmallows or make sâmores over a fire (or in the microwave) for a classic childhood treat, guilt-free. The familiar taste and smell can invoke memories of more carefree days from your past.
9. Visit a castle.
Visit a castle. A majestic old castle or historical mansion can transport you back in time to a world of high tea, ballroom dancing and fancy feasts. Take a tour of an interesting site with lots of character to get a glimpse into the aristocratic life of the elite.
10. Find a hidden gem in a thrift store.
Do you remember feeling joy as a kid after discovering a tiny trinket at a tag sale or second-hand shop? Buy a sparkling pair of shoes, flowy dress, dapper jacket or special item or piece of jewelry. Charm bracelets, music boxes, lockets, gemstones and pocket watches (with lots of winding gears) seem to possess a little bit of magic within.
11. Wake up early to watch the sunrise.
When is the last time you were up early enough to see the sunrise? Start your day in the magnificent presence of the Earthâs energizing light and heat source. Bask in the morning sunâs radiant glow and reap the benefits of its proven mood-boosting rays.
12. Go horseback riding.
No fairytale is complete without a few horseback riding scenes. Horses have partnered with humans for centuries to embark on long quests and magical journeys. Horseback riding is a great way to spend extra time outdoors, get some exercise and connect with majestic creatures that are tough not to admire.
13. Blow bubbles or light up a sparkler.
It may sound silly, but the items we once cherished during childhood can still serve as a source of magic for adults, as long as we take the time out to enjoy them. Doing something sensory just because provides an extra element of magic in your day.
14. Jump on a trampoline, ride a bike or go skating.
One of the most rewarding parts of childhood is the numerous opportunities to be physically active. While adults too often see exercise as a chore, children exert their energy simply to have fun. Engage in fun forms of exercise that feel more like play than an obligation. Join a racquetball game, go rock climbing or pick up a skateboard to move your body in new ways and participate in some friendly competition.
15. Go to the aquarium, circus, zoo or art museum.
Who said field trips are just for kids? Explore the attractions around you and take an interest in local sites, even if you go alone. Part of the problem with being an adult can be our tendency to follow the same routines, day in and day out. Switch things up by taking a daytrip and learn something new while youâre at it.
As we grow older, it becomes increasingly obvious that life isnât exactly a fairytale. The guaranteed happily ever after doesnât always work out the way we hope. Disappointments, losses and boredom can easily creep in, stealing our joy and dulling our senses. Bring back the magic by interspersing your adult life with childlike activities and excursions from time to time. Take a break from the seriousness of life and try something different. What do you have to lose?