ATTENTION : PARENTS
The time has arrived...you need to ADJust your LEADERSHIP
We live in an extremely sensitive and everchanging world!
That said I think it is very encouraging to acknowledge the most recent (and hugely significant) societal views of old that have been forced to change. I am sincerely proud to tip my cap to our youth for the continued pressures placed on the older (and not always wiser) generation to update their thinking on many issues that have needed attention.
While our youth are quick to point out our (obvious) ignorance over topics ranging from gender identity to global warming concerns, we also need to pay attention to the world our children are currently living in. We are generally fairly ignorant to the huge numbers of youngsters who are suffering in silence. Those who are grappling to cope after repeated physical and emotional abuse based on their ethnic backgrounds, political or religious views or by simply being in a space where their peers do not accept them.
As adults, we are quick to defend our own actions (or most often - our REactions ) when faced with this reality. We tend to justify our decisions while 'rubbishing' our own children’s thoughts and opinions. Is it any wonder that countless individuals are taking to ‘self-harm’ or worse ? Anxiety and depression have become the norm for a great percentage of our youth. This is a known and proven fact and one that needs our attention.
Over the course of history, the youth have always been exceptionally vocal regarding their thoughts on the cracks they see in society.
Way too many of those highlighted cracks have been ignored (much like the captain of the Titanic ignoring the size of the iceberg (below the surface) before the catastrophic collision…)
But this planet now lives with the fear that these cracks could open at any time and have seismic repercussions - not too dissimilar to the devastation caused upon the collision of tectonic plates.
So, what is the point that I am trying to make?
Firstly, I want to congratulate and thank the world changing youth of the past and present…. young people like STEVE BIKO, NKOSI JOHNSSON, GRETA THUNBERG, the man standing in front of the CHINESE ARMY TANK in Tiananmen SQUARE and so many thousands more. We need to recognize that the youth are indeed the future, and they need to have a say in the way they can live in this future – their future.
I also feel the need to point out that the youth that live around us today, need to be acknowledged and supported like never before. Not only do they live in a world that still is teetering on the edge due to the mistakes made by preceding generations, but they are, I believe, a generation that struggle with so many more mental challenges that any generation before them. The youth of today are viewed as very opinionated, overly sensitive, and most certainly extremely aggressive. This opinion needs to change.
My wife and I have gone through the most unbelievably challenging times over the past 5 years - challenges that were certainly magnified post COVID in March 2020. This blog is not to highlight the countless (significant) challenges that have had the potential to break us completely as a family.
I just wanted to point out that, through the challenging as well as the rewarding times, we have managed to respect all voices and keep an open mind - even when it goes completely against our natural instinct.
Our youth face far bigger problems that we can ever imagine. PERIOD.
We cannot compare what they face daily to what we faced when we grew up.
It is like comparing the landline telephone to an Apple iPhone….
We need to LISTEN, UNDERSTAND and RESEARCH all issues or concerns properly before we offer solutions.
The key now is to become ADJUSTED LEADERS…
As parents, we need to acknowledge that it is in fact a privilege and a skill to be able to listen to our kids. From there we can accept that our kids are able to teach wonderful lessons. By fully understanding the problem, and welcoming their input, we will be able to find long term and significantly helpful solutions together.
Let us not be scared to become vulnerable at times. The answers will be much clearer once all family members are able to find a place of mutual respect.
My guide as a parent, other than Jesus, is my wife.
She is a person who has truly astounded me with her willingness to get her hands dirty with very real family problems. She has often allowed her past mistakes to guide her in her parenting, acknowledging very often that her kid’s opinions DO MATTER. She has never forfeited her objective to help me, and the kids live our best life possible.
She is an amazing communicator and her blogsite, www.unfilterthatlens is a must read.