Early days, or our ‘Bachpan’ always brings back nostalgic memories and every person reminisces of fond recollections, when you think of those golden days. The reminiscences are so special when life was not complicated but pleasant with happiness and joy coming from very small things like a pillion ride with a neighbor or hiding behind parked cars after breaking a window pane while playing in the building compound.
But are we allowing our children to enjoy that pleasure? As parents and teachers, we are the biggest barriers that stop the children from enjoying these small joys bogging them with academic performance, extra activity classes, turning them from children to mechanical robots who dance to our tunes! Who doesn’t want to be happy in life? Indeed, we all are in search of happiness.
The moment we start thinking about it, the memories of playful childhood flash before our eyes. “That age is of innocence and small things make children happy as their needs are limited. A small piece of chocolate, an ice cream or just a simple toy gives them pleasure in abundance. They feel secured and happy when parents are around. More so, playing with pets, peers, parents and grandparents; getting drenched in the rains, counting stars and watching a rainbow in the sky fill their hearts with joy. A little appreciation, a word of encouragement and a pat on the shoulder make them feel elated”, says Namita Mohanty, teaching Psychology at Utkal University.
“Academic pressure, competition, discrimination, unhealthy comparison and daily hassles of life are snatching away their happiness. We are being cruel to them by our over expectation, indifference and apathy which inhibit their need for curiosity and creativity. It further makes the children feel inhibited and depressed. To make them happy, we must allow them to express their feelings as it is their right to be happy”, she added.
“Childhood is the most blissful period of one’s life. Far from anxiety, ego, stress and strain, the child is content in her world whether s/he belongs to the rich or poor. A full stomach, an unconditional love, some free play make her complete. No regrets for yesterday, no worries for tomorrow, but dwelling upon her imagination, the child is happy and we as adults must make sure that the children have a happy childhood to cope up with the pressure in the later life”, says Sabita Patnaik, founder and principal, KIDZZ Bloomingdale’s.
Even though the trend has changed the children are still children and will find happiness and satisfaction in insignificant things like sharing their lunch boxes in school, sailing paper boats in the poodle, watching their favourite cartoons on TV and even licking cream from the cream biscuits. Why not we become children and join in these inane things and try to grab some happy moments in our stressful lives?
(Aditi is a freelance writer and pursues interest in the area of social issues)