Have you ever watched children playing, asking questions about the world, and exploring their surroundings, and noticed how wonderfully enthusiastic and imaginative they tend to be about things?
For a variety of different reasons, that kind of childlike sense of wonder, enthusiasm, zest for life, and imagination, are often the kinds of things that just don’t stick with us into adulthood. Instead, we all too often find ourselves becoming disillusioned, jaded and discouraged by life’s ups and downs and our grownup disappointments, heartbreaks, and responsibilities — and a lot of the magic seems to get left somewhere along the way.
There are plenty of reasons why it might be the case that kids tend to be more imaginative and enthusiastic than adults, but it seems pretty clear that at least one of the major reasons is likely to be the simple fact that children are actively encouraged to view the world in an imaginative way and to absorb themselves in great and upbeat stories on a regular basis.
When we get to adulthood, however, there is an often implicit, sometimes explicit idea that it’s important to be “hard-nosed” and “serious,” and to put away things like imagination in order to face the world head-on. We may do things like download tiktok videos for entertainment, but there’s a good chance that we don’t do much more than that.
When all is said and done, though, there are many reasons why exposing yourself to great stories on a regular basis, as an adult, can be remarkably positive and may even have transformative benefits for your life at large.
Here are just a few reasons why it’s important to expose yourself to great stories.
To rekindle your sense of wonder and enthusiasm for life
Great stories have the ability to re-enchant the world for us, and to once more get us to see things from a perspective, awe, wonder, and the anticipation of adventure — as opposed to the kind of perspective that all too often ends up developing when we are living totally “practical” lives devoid of great storytelling, and where a sense of boredom and futility may well set in.
It’s important to keep in mind that a fictional tale can have very powerful effects on how we perceive the world at large — because great stories will always resonate with things that already exist within us, other people, and the world at large. So for anyone who’s skeptical that a great novel or even a great TV program could have the potential to transform your outlook on life, be aware that immense inner change can be motivated by a great story.
One of the powers that a great story can have is to stop you from living life on autopilot — by reminding you of a lot of the magic and wonder that’s all around you, but which you may normally take for granted or not even think about at all.
To remember to be a dreamer and to dare to pursue your goals
Great stories, whether presented through the medium of novels, films, or TV programs, frequently depict the world and life in a version where the intensity is turned up a level, and where it’s clear and obvious that developments in the plot have real meaning.
In day-to-day life, it’s often all too easy to end up feeling as though things are futile, and as if there’s not much more to be done than to just “get by” and make sure that the household chores are dealt with.
But life should be — and can be — a great adventure, filled with big dreams and meaningful goals that we pursue.
Great stories can serve as a reminder to dream big and to pursue those kinds of goals.
To remind you to notice the beauty and significance present all around you
All too often, we end up finding ourselves moving through everyday life, feeling a sense of boredom — as if nothing particularly noteworthy or impressive is happening at all for us to celebrate.
Many people, in this situation, find themselves yearning for something more magical, beautiful, and exciting.
The truth, though, is that everyday life contains all sorts of events, situations, and moments that can be immensely magical and significant if only you are able to notice and appreciate them in the right way.
Great stories can have the ability to alter the way you perceive the world at large, and life itself so that you are more prone to noticing the “poetry” present in all of those individual moments.
Reading, watching, or listening to great stories can also remind you of the fact that you are living out your own life story, and are largely responsible for authoring it, too.
Image credit: Pixabay CC0 License