10 Behaviors You Should Steal From Your Kids

As moms, we spend a lot of time showing our kids how to behave. This is important, but sometimes we get so consumed with it that we miss out on the lessons they could teach us. Consider this: Who’s happier right this moment, you or your child? If your kids are walking on sunshine while you growl your way through another grumpy, over-scheduled Thursday, it may be time to steal a few ideas from them…

1. Wear your feelings on your sleeve. Sure we come down on our kids for throwing tantrums, but they are excellent at solving conflict immediately. Is stewing over a problem and blowing up later really a better solution?

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2. Eat only when you’re hungry. My kids act like starving lions when hunger hits them, but they don’t eat their feelings. Only the adults in my house find themselves elbow deep in a bag of Doritos out of boredom.

3. Dress to make yourself happy. Kids like what they like and choose clothes based on comfort and fun designs. Think how much happier you could be if you stopped dressing to camouflage a flaw or try to fit in with the skinny jeans brigade at school pickup.

4. Pursue happiness doggedly. Toddlers really have this skill down. Almost all of their actions are motivated by a desire to be joyful. If you feel like a hamster on a wheel, you’re probably allocating too much time to to-do lists and not enough to chasing your own happiness.

5. Assert yourself. Kids tell it like it is and demand their rightful turn for everything from a slide at the park to rights to pick tonight’s pizza toppings. Stop shrinking politely and hoping someone will offer you what you want– ask for it already.

6. Lean on other people. My kids take for granted that there’s an entourage of people to help them through their days from family to teachers to friends. I tend to forget that there is another option beyond tearing my hair out trying to do every last thing myself.

7. Get excited about the little things. Kids get really excited over the smallest things- an extra cherry on their sundaes or the 500th repeat of their favorite cartoons. Don’t be too cool to let your day be made by small pleasures.

8. Let grudges die speedy deaths. Kids may get their feelings hurt easily but they let go quickly too. They understand that getting over themselves means getting back to fun time sooner. Still stewing over a snarky comment from 6 months ago? Take inspiration from your 6 year old instead, and you’ll be having more fun too.

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9. Make new friends anywhere, anytime. Kids take every opportunity to make new friends- many a fierce childhood friendship has been formed in the waiting rooms of places where the moms sat right beside them, never breaking eye contact with their iPhones. Adults are more likely to stay within their decades long circle of friends and miss out on new people.

10. Run, jump and move for fun. Kids get that running, jumping and playing is for fun. Grown-ups (me included) are more likely to suffer at the gym just to chase a number on the scale. Find something fun that makes you feel like a kid again rather than martyr at the temple of body shame.

Related post: 28 Reasons Kids Are Awesome

About the writer

Sarah Grecula is a full-time working mom and story enthusiast.  She blogs at ProjectWriteThisMoment  and loves NPR and the Bravo network pretty equally.  She believes in embracing her in inner dork and encourages you to do the same.


Cristine Ann 1 year ago

fantastic! (except I can’t do the eating when I’m hungry, i’m always hungry, damn insulin resistance !)

Gina Hamilton 1 year ago

I CONCUR! We could ALL learn from kids….take the time to be silly and enjoy. If you worry what people think of you, they will be grown and you will have missed the opportunity of a lifetime.

Joleen Natoli 1 year ago

What a wonderful world it would be!..right?

Jennifer Jones Rombardo 1 year ago

What a great little read! So true. My 3 year old had way more fun and joy every day than I do!

Betty Jane Type Lanham 1 year ago


MaryBeth Butler 1 year ago

So simple & so true . Easy fixes for anyone to make

Joan 1 year ago

I love most of the list, but my kids totally eat when they are bored. Usually “I’m HUUUUUUUUNGRY” at a non-regular meal or snacktime actually means “I’m BOOOOOOOOOOOORED!”

Jamie James 1 year ago

Great advice to start out a new school year for us parents!!

Kristin T. Berg 1 year ago

And number 11: relax and NAP when you’re tired. :)

    Kristin T. Berg 1 year ago

    Haha true! My kid is still a baby but I definitely learned to nap from him!

Stephanie Musselman 1 year ago

Printed…Although, I believe I might still (happily) be a child, based on some of these. :)

Sarah ‘Mann’ Subias 1 year ago

I love this!

Ayla Ervin 1 year ago

I’ll dress how I want again after I get this baby out of my belly and it becomes practical again. It’s hard to wear flowy broomstick skirts while chasing a two-year old up a slide.

Patty Rodriguez Burrington 1 year ago

I want to like my girls. Happy!

Valerie Ann 1 year ago

I wanna dress like a 4 year old

Nicole Slaughter 1 year ago

This is great, #8. yes, i am still stewing over a comment from 6 months ago. LOL maybe i should heed this advice. :)

Kelly O’Neil 1 year ago

Love this! So true..ill be trying to do these more..my kids teach me new things every day so, why not :)

Brooke Wondra 1 year ago

Agreed! Great points.. that almost seem too obvious to have to be “reminded” of them, yet here we are! 😉


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