Let me tell you about a girl, we’ll call her Jenny. She doesn’t look anyone in the eye. She barely says “Hi” when you walk in the door. And this girl named Jenny is not a figment of my imagination. She is real, she cares only about herself, and you don’t want her on your team because of the way she was raised.
Don’t get me wrong, not every person under thirty has a lackluster care for work or human interaction. I’ve met some amazingly intelligent individuals lately that want the best for their families, friends, and co-workers. But there are some that amaze me. And not it a good way. They have adults in their lives that have allowed this to happen. Growing up with cell phones in their hands and more privileges at ten years old than I had at fourteen.
Here’s what I find wrong with the world: the innate sense of selfishness that some young people have developed. We are way past the “every generation has a few like it” moment. There is a lack of respect, but beyond that a lack of even understanding for some young people. They refuse to meet in the middle. Me, me, me. And it’s disgusting. Truly, nothing irritates me more.
I’m not someone slinging a You-Have-To-Pay-Your-Dues line. I’m literally saying if you want to be part of a successful team, act like an adult and have adult conversations. Don’t be a coward and hide behind a device or a set of ear buds.
Because of the experiences I’ve had as of the last year, I’m making sure that my boys are raised differently. Don’t get me wrong, I can’t stop them from loving their devices and being part of the Minecraft Generation. I won’t be able to pry a phone from their fingers in about ten years. As a matter of fact, I’ll want them to have it.
But I want to invite mutual respect back into our world and I would love you to join my cause.
Here’s how we do it:
-Look people in the eye and say Hello. Strangers at the grocery store, strangers on our street. And ask them about themselves. Where they work, what they like to do, or how they like the town we live in.
-Get off our devices some. I’m not saying turn them off completely. I’m saying get them away from the dinner table, but them in a wicker basket. And if you have kids under 10, seriously limit usage of those devices. Some of these kids get really angry when you take away their electronics and that’s not okay if we’re raising them to be people who are respectful of each other.
-Each week do something that is purely joyful. A thing you love that makes you happy beyond words. When you feel good, you do good. It’s a simple psychological fact. And when you’re feeling good, we have less of a tendency to throw shade at each other.
That’s my call to action, my hope, and honestly my prayer for the generations to come. That we respect each other no matter our differences.