I am SO completely done with the “you’re not good enough” mentality we are saturated with in our society. We talk about confidence, self-improvement, we say with one side of our mouth “you are enough” but really? Is that our true belief system?
I’ve read it twice now in the last week from 2 different sources that as children we hear the word no over 150,000 times – I repeat 150,000 – by age 18 and approximately 5,000 yes’s in that same time span. I’ve also read that we’re raising a bunch of children who feel entitled and feel like the world should be handed to them quickly and easily because of our technology and the speed at which we are progressing. Really? Then why oh why is suicide the number 1 killer among North American teens?
I’m reflecting on all the situations in the past few weeks where I’ve been told myself what needs to be different, what’s not right, how I should do things better, without being told what it is I’m doing right. I have to seriously consider the insecurities I deal with on a personal level and how much of what I hear is filtered through that. However, I do believe that we are so ingrained to only report on what needs to be fixed instead of celebrating what’s right. Agreed?
Think about it. When we go to a store and the cashier is grumpy or unhelpful we report the behaviour. On the same token, when someone treats us like gold and makes us want to continue shopping at that store, does that get reported too? What about our child’s report card (or our own for that matter)? What’s our default reaction? Do we celebrate the successes or do we go through what needs to improve instead?
When our kids or staff or whoever it is that needs our permission to do something, do we say, “Not until…” or just plain, “No”? Or do we say, “Yes, when….”? In thinking about how I respond to my kids’ requests I’m mortified at myself for how I answer. I’m totally the one who says, “Not until this happens, or no because you didn’t do that.” Is it just me or do we need to give our heads a shake and start telling our left brain to start acting in agreement with our right brain when it comes to getting more yeses into our lives?
I can’t tell you how many posts I read on a daily basis that are encouraging and tell me I can do anything I want and yet I still live in a society that tells me how much I need to improve. We’re still hearing things like: you need to lose weight, you’re not happy enough, you need to pursue your dreams regardless of the cost…and if you don’t do it quick enough because you merely need to put food on the table for your kids, well then you simply don’t want it bad enough. Kind of an oxymoron and it’s the stuff that makes my head spin (like it needs any added assistance).
I go back to the whole idea that teenagers are killing themselves in record numbers. What is UP with that? We clearly need to stop and think. How are we impacting those we influence? Are we getting to more yes’s than no’s? Consider those yes/no stats. Do you really think that saying yes more is going to equal out to the no’s if you just try a little harder? I’m thinking it’s going to take a LOT more yes’s to turn this thing around to to be more balanced. I don’t mean letting people do whatever they want whenever they want. I mean being intentional in changing our default to say things like, “Sure you can go to your friend’s house once your homework is done,” or “I’d love to see you enjoy that movie once your other tasks are complete,” or “Yes you can do that… just because.” How about, “Wow your attitude is so refreshing,” to the cashier AND to their manager instead of, “Do you know how poorly I got treated today by one of your staff members?”
I want to start a YES revolution. Any takers want to join me? I really really really want your feedback on my thoughts today. Really.
Think About It
“The celebration of beauty is an invitation to ask your soul everyday, ‘mind if I join you?'” ~ Anonymous