When I was in my teens and early adulthood, I regularly questioned the viewpoint of older adults.
At that moment, the majority of their ideas felt archaic and outdated. I remember my sentiment for them was pity due to their consistent frustrations with my generation. The belief I held of people from previous eras was they were behind the times.
Fast Forward over 20 years later, and I now occupy a similar position to older folks from yesteryear. I struggle with relating to much of today’s reality.
In some ways, it says more about how I have changed than current events. I remember how confident I was in my mindset all those years ago. Now, I realize I didn’t know shit back then; my brain contained too much hubris.
In an identical vein, I look at the confidence of many young people today and feel they are making the same mistake.
Talking about certain aspects of life without having significant lived experience comes across as reading from a script. You are not positive about your beliefs; it’s like acting in a play. The lines are given to you by someone else, and you repeat them verbatim.
One can come across as convincing until you realize it’s not from their knowledge base; the words came from elsewhere.
This isn’t to minimize young people’s lives. Indeed, they have plenty to offer the world, but everything must come with humility. Those who came before you generally have already been down the road; there is nothing new under the sun.
Current neuroscientist data suggests the human brain fully develops around age 25.
It serves as a scientific reason for all those in their youth to give themselves time before they attempt to take over the planet. Maturity and true understanding take a while; it does not come to us overnight, no matter how much material we have read or watched.
Believing your hypothesis is fine, but it should get tested at some point.
Which would require some actual involvement in what you’re talking about. I know many of my ideas have changed over the years once I was put in situations where they were confronted by reality.
When we all are in silos and everyone agrees, it becomes easy to believe our thoughts are valid.
True wisdom comes from observing the application of our ideology in real-life circumstances. It’s not enough to have a theory; you need to see how it works and analyze the outcomes.
Numbers don’t lie, so one must rethink what they hold true if it consistently leads to poor results.
At least, this is what I would tell a younger version of myself if it were possible. There’s nothing wrong with slowing down and not moving so fast to enforce things. Noticing what other societies have done and examining their conclusions would have been a better first step for me.
My hope for young people revolves around giving themselves a little more time before making their positions so definite.
What do you think? Am I just another old guy screaming get off my own lawn?
Vertis Williams is a Positive Habits Life Coach and a Mindfulness Trainer. He is a regular presenter at employee and team development events. Contact him to request more info on his Workshops or on his Coaching Services! Click HERE to Request a Complimentary Habit Coaching Session!