The Need for Balance Between Order and Creativity
Have you ever seen a child jumping in a puddle as their mother worries about how their clothes are getting dirty? Have you known of children who arrive at school exhausted because they went to bed way too late? The above examples are everyday situations that occur in many families and perfectly illustrate the lack of balance between order and creativity.
Every child is different, and so is every parent and every family. Not all children have the same personality traits and not all households follow the same rules and values.
Some parents are more inclined to encourage spontaneity and others to instill discipline. And all choices are valid, as long as you make them in the best interest of the child. However, it’s essential that, in any case, there be a certain balance.
The wings of creativity
There’s no doubt that children need to develop their imagination and that they must grow up in environments that favor it. This ability, which they all innately possess to a greater or lesser extent, allows them to explore and learn about the world around them. Experimenting, inquiring and discovering are all processes that lead children to understand their environment and know how to manage within it.
Creativity allows them to develop their cognitive, motor and social skills. It stimulates them and increases their self-esteem and self-confidence. Also, it’s an excellent way to explore their talents and encourage their curiosity. All children should feel free to try and fail, change course, and discover the consequences of their actions.
By encouraging their creativity, we help them to develop a critical capacity, a confident and spontaneous personality, and a flexible and adaptable attitude to change. Therefore, it’s of incalculable value for their personal growth.
The anchor of order
On the other hand, order also represents an extremely useful and necessary value for these little developing humans. It’s a fact that routines and schedules provide children with a sense of security and predictability. Clear and consistent limits and rules are also fundamental for their development. This helps them learn to tolerate frustration and become more responsible and perseverant.
Being orderly with their spaces, toys and schedules translates into greater mental and emotional balance. In addition, order is necessary in order to instill values such as discipline, self-care and respect for oneself and others.
For example, waiting their turn to speak, picking up their clothes in the bathroom after a shower, or throwing their trash away can be simple gestures of order that are essential for harmonious coexistence.
The balance between order and creativity
We’re all aware, at least on a theoretical level, that both qualities are necessary to raise healthy children. However, when it comes down to it, we often find it difficult to find that balance between order and creativity. Thus, we tend to lean excessively towards one of the extremes. And no matter which one we choose, it won’t have very positive consequences.
If we give our children wings to play, dream, imagine and explore, they’ll grow up free and spontaneous, yes. But they’ll undoubtedly need a structure that makes them feel contained and a guide that orients them on how to act.
An excess of creativity without order can create irresponsible, scatter-brained children, incapable of concentrating and working towards a goal. When they go out into the real world, these children will see that there are rules that we all have to abide by and who won’t be able to do so. In short, they’ll be unhappy children.
However, an excess of order won’t be any more beneficial. Excessive rigidity and discipline lead children to develop a submissive and complacent personality, incapable of thinking for themselves and with serious difficulties in adapting to different environments.
So, let’s try not to clip their wings, but make sure they have a solid ground to return to. Let your child jump in puddles, let them get their hands dirty, let them experiment. But also teach them the value of cleaning up after themselves, being tidy, and taking care of their internal and external world. The balance between order and creativity is what makes happy children.