Like other parents, I’ve been concerned about the future of today’s generation. As I specifically work with teens struggling with anxiety, ADHD, delinquency, depression, and other issues, it can be easy to become stressed about my children’s future.
Yet, as I have guided and watched my children grow into their self-identity, I’ve been consistently amazed by strengths. Many news pundits discount these strengths when discussing today’s younger generations.
Younger Generations Embrace Technological Change
One of the hallmarks of younger generations is their enthusiastic embrace of changing technology. While Gen Xer’s around my age began to experiment with technology in our teen years, I still vividly remember the sound my dial-up modem made. We were unable to make phone calls while online creating an AOL account was intimidating. This is not the digital world my children have grown up experiencing.
Instead, I recently watched my oldest son upgrade his PC, all through his own research and YouTube tutorials. He showed me his computer’s diagnostic metrics after the upgrade, then walked me through what he was talking about!
I like to think I was a good influence on his digital skills and technology-savvy nature. In all honesty, he has far outgrown my own technological abilities. And it’s not just my oldest, all my children are highly proficient when using technology, whether it be diagnosing an issue with the family computer or navigating various social media platforms.
Diversity Is Valued By Upcoming Generations
I was born only a few decades after interracial marriage was made legal across the United States. Consequently, the world my generation grew up in still had a lot to learn about diversity and equality. While I like to consider myself open to diversity and multiculturalism, it is something I actively work toward today.
On the other hand, American millennials and Generation Z are the most ethnically diverse generation and value their differences without allowing those differences to separate them. I have seen this with my own children with their diverse friend groups, and it makes me want to expand my horizons.
Seeing The Best In Our Children
It can be easy to focus on the negative, especially when it comes to the rising generations. Plenty of reports label our children as selfish, narcissistic, lazy, and more. When these concerns start to nag me, I try to consider these things:
- Have I encouraged innovation and curiosity in my children?
- Can I support them as they take different paths than my own?
- Am I pushing my personal goals on my children or encouraging them to set their own?
- Have I taught them how to be safe?
By answering these questions, I can see how my parenting is either succeeding or falling short and change where necessary. That way, I can better support my children and allow their strengths to shine.
Let us all take the time to notice the strengths in today’s generation, especially in our own children, and help them soar.