Living in Stereo(type).

Posted: March 27, 2018 in Uncategorized

It seems…
There has been a lot of finger pointing, and name calling, and rock throwing between different generational camps lately.
We have this natural tendency to lump generations together.
We draw lines.
We classify.
See if this sounds familiar…
Millennials all wear skinny jeans and they hang out in coffee shops, they are all lazy, right? They eat soap, yet they think they can tell us what to do! They feel entitled and they all have iPhones. They don’t settle for busy work, they want their work to matter.
Gen X are a cynical bunch, they are risk takers who like wearing flannel, they don’t like rules. They want their MTV. They’ve all abandoned their families in pursuit of self fulfillment.
Baby boomers are all super patriotic, optimistic and ambitious. They are workaholics who made America great. They aren’t tech savvy, right?

They all look alike, think alike, act alike…right?

We live and die by demographics.
We paint with bold, broad strokes.
But, when we do that, we get it wrong.
We slap a label on a whole generation or group, Forgetting that the whole is made up of unique individuals.
They are people, not members of a clone army.

We are pretty sure we know what to expect from every generation.
But the problem is that there are exceptions to every expectation.
Actually that’s not a problem, we should all be exceptions.
We should defy definition.
Not all millennials are selfish, not all baby boomers aren’t.
We are ALL beautiful hybrids.
We have to get rid of the cookie cutters.
We do people a huge disservice when we stereotype.
It’s a crime against humanity to generalize a generation.
It’s second guessing the creator.
When we lump, we limit.
It cripples potential.
It creates a lid.
You would think that we would have recognized by now that stereotypes stifle spirit.
We need to quit treating people like they are inherently worse than us because they were born after us.
EVERY age is golden in it’s own way AND EVERY age is tarnished in it’s own way.
EVERY generation, since the beginning of time, has BOTH stepped up AND screwed up. It’s a tasty combo platter of our DNA and the consequences of our choices.
But there is hope for all of us, we are ALL equal parts of beautiful AND broken.
It’s about family instead of generation.
We ALL have both nothing AND everything to offer.
Let’s learn from each other during our shared journey.

Everyone on this planet, regardless of when they were born, is uniquely equipped to do something that’s never EVER been done.
It’s based on who you are.
You are wired to be and see different from anyone else.
You don’t have to be defined by your birthday.
Be defined by the reason you were born.
Be defined by all the amazing ordinary extraordinary days that fill your days.

We are ALL the same in the fact that we are ALL different.
That’s not generational, it’s human.
Rather than classify, we need to celebrate the things the make us ALL different AND the things that make us the same.
Moments should define a generation, stories of individuals who stood up or stood out.

I close with these lines from a classic Gen X movie:
“You see us as you want to see us – in the simplest terms, in the most convenient definitions. But what we found out is that each one of us is a brain…
…and an athlete…
…and a basket case…
…a princess…
…and a criminal…”

So no matter, how old you are or what your story is, take a minute and throw your fist in the air and shout “Don’t you forget about me!”

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