Today however, was quite an eye-opener for me while Carter and I were driving home from school.
Carter: "Daddy, I don't know why I hit my friends. There is something in my brain that makes me grumpy"
Me: "Really, what makes you think that?"
"I think there's something in my brain that makes me grumpy, but I don't know how to take it out"
"Well, how about when you feel your brain getting grumpy again, you count 1-2-3-4, repeat, 1-2-3-4..."
If you have read any of Eckhart Tolle's books (The Power of Now, or A New Earth) then you know that awareness has an 'Ego' and the 'Observer.' The 'Duality of Man' as Jung refers to it.
The Ego is the mind that acts and reacts. The one that curses when you get cut off in traffic or the one that uses food because it's comforting. The Observer is the mind in the present at all times. This "state of mind" concerns about nothing, it is peaceful, accepting, and content. It observes what the Ego is doing and attempts to bring control and rationale to its actions. The Observer is always in the present, it does not care if you got cut off in traffic 10 minutes ago, it is the small voice that tells the Ego to "let it go."
Of course, a full explanation of these concepts would be too long to post here, but I didn't find out about the Ego and the 'Observer' until after I turned 28, yet here is Carter, a 4 year old, already self-aware!
Obviously, I will need to explain to him the actual concepts later, but kids are smart! I will never underestimate their intelligence again!
Later that evening, at the dinner table, "1-2-3-4, 1-2-3-4, 1-2-3-4."
"What are you doing, Carter?" Asks, Chantelle.
"My grumpy is coming back"
"...Oh, yeah...told him that every time he feels his craziness coming on, to count to four and it will go away," I said.
Kids are amazing, and if you have had similar experiences like the event today, please share! We'd love to hear them!