Can you grow younger in your outlook while maintaining your wisdom? Would you even want to?
Years ago I was in a multi-generational group that took part in a quiz to determine our outlook on the professional work world and which generation subscribed to the same beliefs. A number of the group members resisted, because they didn’t want to reveal their true age, but all agreed to give the exercise a try. Most of the participants clearly embraced the professional viewpoint of their generation. There were two notable outliers. One woman was raised as an only child by older parents, and her viewpoints on many things (but not all) embraced her parents’ belief systems. She wasn’t grouped with her age-mates but with the generation older than herself.
The other outlier was … me. My answers reflected the social viewpoint of the generation younger than myself. The other women my age looked at me suspiciously and asked me why? Was it because I have four children? No, because most of my age mates had multiple children. They looked pretty puzzled, stepped back a little and I could see them thinking I’d always been a bit “different.” I’ve pondered this a bit, but I’m still not sure I have the right answer.
I have worked hard to find and embrace a healthier point of view than the co-dependent ways that was the hallmark of the generation older than mine. I have made friends with people younger than myself and really listened to their points of view. And yes, sometimes, but not always, those younger people were my children. When their points of view made sense to me, felt freer and happier, I’d change my point of view and join them. Why stick with what is uncomfortable just because it was the way I was raised or because it’s what my peers think?
I have given myself permission to examine what the media tells me, reflect on the view presented by alternate media, and examine my heart before I make up my mind. That means observing my points of view and questioning their validity. Is this something you ever do? With what results? Have you ever changed your political party, church, brand, or music just because the old ones just didn’t fit any more? Have you out-grown the beliefs you started with?