There’s three main stages to life; childhood, youth, adulthood. Each stage has something unique to offer. Childhood offers vibrancy, curiosity, imagination among so much more. Youth offers energy, creativity and boldness. But the problem is, as we go through these stages, rather than tap into what each stage offers, we begin to mold that individual into an adult. But not just any adult, an adult crafted for economic benefit.
So the entire stage of youth becomes preparation for adulthood. There’s no real focus on tapping into what this stage has to offer. And so that energy young people have is used for working 2-3 jobs. That boldness is used to confront people who’ve disrespected you. And that creativity is used for school projects. Not only are many youth wasting their life, most of us are wasting the lives of our young people. I can’t be the only person that sees this. McDonalds, a multi-billion dollar corporation, has a workforce of over 75% of people under the age of 25. That should tell you something.
But the problem is rooted in the fact that we have labelled everything a child does as ‘childish’. When in fact the majority of attributes that make up our humanity can more easily be seen in a child. A being that is intrinsically motivated, imaginative, curious, unrealistic and a dreamer. Tell me one of those that aren’t present in childhood. But we’ve made a devastating mistake. Rather than refine that child into an adult, we’ve moved into the opposite direction and created adults with no imagination, no curiousity, very realistic, no dreams and motivated only by the money that’s placed in front of them. But when we look at an adult who is more like a ‘refined child’, we think of people like Martin Luther King Jr, who was a dreamer. People like Steve Jobs, who created a world from his imagination where people used technology as a part of their everyday lives. People like Albert Einstein who says “I have no special talent, I am only passionately curious’. Or people like Coco Chanel, who changed an entire industry with her creativity.
So you tell me, could we have developed the wrong idea of what adult hood is? Are we stripping away the wrong childish attributes? And what type of adult have you or are you being molded into?