Updated: Jul 18, 2018
I've been a teacher for a long time and I've had the opportunity to work with multiple generations of students. Don't get me wrong. There is nothing more rewarding than helping children have a good start in life. There are great kids out there. They are strong, disciplined, hard-working, caring human beings. And there are many amazing parents, working to give their children a good life, sacrificing, supporting, helping them set and achieve goals and teaching real values.
But the fact is that we have now raised a generation of weaklings. They are mentally and physically lazy. Asking them to memorize something or to do manual labor is horrifying to them. They are never wrong and anyone who tries to hold them accountable is mean and unfair. They expect and are often rescued by their parents instead of learning how to deal with life's obstacles.
They want what they want and they want it now! They come out of college expecting to run the company rather than working their way up like others did and actually gathering experience. They need crying rooms, Playdough therapy, safe spaces and under no circumstances ask them to compete. Because they might not be #1. They might lose. And they have no way of dealing with that since we haven't forced them to learn that skill.
This country was founded on struggle. We had the strength to beat the greatest military force on the planet (American Revolution). We took on a global battle and won it (World War II). We are now facing perhaps one of the most frightening threat to our existence, but seem to be beating them down (terrorism).
But I fear for the future. Where will we find the young men and women who will want to stand up, sacrifice their personal needs and defend not only our country but the values that made us who we were?
Who do you want our children to be?
Children are who they are raised to be. So here's a list of suggestions for parents.
Parents need to accept the following:
1. Your kids are going to be disappointed
2. You kids are going to make mistakes
3. Your kids are going to experience pain
4. Your kids need to take responsibility for their choices
5. Your kids can't have everything they want immediately
7. Your kids need to feel and show gratitude for what they have
8. Your kids need to show respect for others
9. Your kids are not victims of some great conspiracy against them
10. Your kids need to be mentally strong & emotionally balanced
Take this for what it's worth. Reflect on it. And honestly assess how many of these can you check off the list.
Here's my request. Stop saving your kids from life. Let them fail... and learn. Let them struggle and have the satisfaction of achieving a goal. Let them take ownership of their actions and thereby make better decisions in their lives.
Help them to appreciate the good things and handle the bad things, because life is a series of challenges, not to be ignored or run from, but to be met and conquered. Facing tough situations makes them stronger.
Explain to them that life is not fair - never has been, never will be, but that we each have the power to make our world what we want it to be.
So that's your homework.
We've gone off course and need to right the ship. If we don't change direction, we will be facing a storm of epic proportions with a world of weak, whiny, frightened, angry, intolerant people incapable of handling anything. Our world needs so much work. Producing people who are strong, selfless and fearless would be a good start.
If you're interested in this topic, watch this video:
Millennials in the Workforce, A Generation of Weakness
And read this article: