I found Kim and Jason on the Escape Plan blog two summer’s ago. I started to write down the 40 day steps to end Adultitist. Got to number 20. Then got busy. Lost the name of the website because I forgot to save it. Periodically I would search the net but there are a ton of 40-day plans out there. Fortunately the Goddess of New Year Eve Resolutions smiled down upon us and favored me with a blessing to find the lost website just in time for January.
Last year I decided to make 12 monthly resolutions because it seemed more effective than just writing down a list of goals and hoping for the best. For one whole month I was dedicated to a goal. Some months I was more successful than others. The months I was a complete failure I know I did my best so it was not a complete loss. About mid summer I came to the conclusion that we needed a little more spice in our life. Having three active children close together was a little insane and the effect was “Adultitis”! We needed to rediscover our inner child. Now that the kids are older and we are finally venturing out of the cave more we need to learn to relax a bit.
Kim and Jason came up with the term “Adultitis” to describe the lost child in all of us. According to their website, “Adultitis is a silent epidemic that has been ignored for far too long. It’s a disease that slowly erodes our inborn childlike spirit, wreaking havoc on our world, our nation, and our families. It kills laughter, dreams, curiosity, faith, happiness, and hope. It stresses us out. It causes us to take ourselves too seriously. And in some extreme cases, it can cause smile amnesia.”
I realized I had Adultitis when our second child was born 6 years ago. Bugs were icky, mud was too dirty and craft projects too messy. I thought to myself, when did this happen? I used to love playing with bugs and especially, my all time favorite childhood past time, making mud pies. That same day I took my then one and three year old out into the backyard to play in the mud. The process to heal myself of adultitis has been at a standstill. This year my resolution is to find something more exciting to do with the dear husband than walk around Costco on date night.
First step to curing adultitis is to head over to adultitis.org and take the test. My test result revealed I was at Stage 2 Adultitis: You have progessed to a very aggressive form of Adultitis. You are probably experiencing very high stress levels and may be having difficulty laughing. Seek help now. Please consult the Prescription for treatment options.
40 ways to escape Adultitis:
1. Spend at least 15 minutes immersing yourself in a field you know nothing about.
2. Find a reason to celebrate and do something to celebrate it.
3. Do something that is typically seen as inappropriate for someone of your age.
4. Add something childlike (not necessarily childish) to your workspace or home.
5. Become a scientist. Conduct a silly experiment.
6. Write down one big dream of yours. Draw or find a picture to go with it and put it somewhere you will see it often.
7. Spend 15 – 30 minutes doing something you love that you don’t often have the chance to do.
8. Draw a funny picture and hide it in an unexpected place for someone else to find.
9. Do one thing today to support a cause or issue you really care about.
10. Create a memory today with someone you care about that will mean a lot ten years from now.
11. Do something your parents would never let you do as a child.
12. Write a letter to a childhood hero (real or fictional).
13. Spend ten minutes doing something outside that you have never done before.
14. Do something to help someone you don’t know.
15. Eat something you’ve never had before.
16. Call or meet with someone in your family and ask them a question you are curious about regarding your family’s history.
17. Learn how to do something new today. Your time limit: 30 minutes.
18. Get out of your element. Go somewhere you’ve never been before.
19. Spend 10 minutes visioning yourself 10 years from now as having accomplished one of your biggest dreams. Be as detailed as possible; imagine in all five senses.
20. Right an old wrong.
21. Write a haiku about the things you are thankful for and put it somewhere to serve as a reminder.
22. Do something to make the world a better place.
23. Take a picture of the most childlike spot in town.
24. Figure out a way to add some color to your day in a new, unusual, or wacky way.
25. Talk in a phony voice or accent to a complete stranger.
26. Open to a random page in the dictionary and look at the first word on the upper left-hand side. Keep turning pages until you find a word you don’t know. See how many times you can use this new word in a sentence today.
27. Take a routine you do everyday and put a childlike spin on it.
28. Buy something that captures the spirit of childhood for under $5.00 (including tax).
29. Ask an expert something you are curious about in his/her field.
30. Figure out a way to bring some fun into a dreaded task today.
31. Find a place to sit quietly for ten minutes. Listen for at least one sound that you would not have normally noticed.
32. Do something that will get you to laugh out-loud (one that puts you in danger of peeing your pants a little bit).
33. For no reason at all treat yourself to something out of the ordinary.
34. Think about some of the things you liked to do as a child. Pick one and do it.
35. Do something to make the day of a child.
36. Accessorize your wardrobe today with a touch of childhood.
37. Eat or drink something today that brings back childhood memories.
38. Make someone a homemade gift to show how much you care about him/her or to thank him/her for a job well done.
39. Play a practical joke on someone.
40. Congratulations on making it to the end. Your final test is to take tomorrow off. Spend today making any necessary adjustments. Do anything you want, but no work and no chores. Consider it a sick day or at least a “sick of it” day. (Remember, Adultitis is a serious affliction.)