Let’s face it, evolution across the generations is glaring in this day and age.
The Baby Boomers (my parents generation), grew up without open discussions of mental health nor self-improvement. Many continued living in traditional roles like their parents. The woman mostly takes care of the home and children (even if she works), and the man brings home the bacon. Although there are exceptions to these descriptions, most everyone I know whose parents are also from the Baby Boomer generation would describe them in the same way.
Generation X (Me), are starting to pave the way for our children in ways that weren’t even available to our parents. Self-help is widely accepted and proven to be healthy. My generation has the resources to achieve emotional health. We are the first generation that is able to raise the next generation in significantly healthier environments.
Generation Z (Aubrey), are growing up in a time that is completely evolved from that of their parents. This generation will grow up having open mental health discussions, many will be accepting of others and their differences, and hopefully more concerned for our planet’s vitality than the generations before them.
What I see in my own family dynamics is how my mom laid the foundation for me to empower myself. Because she was dependent on a man financially, she raised me with a VERY clear message, “Don’t EVER be dependent on a man. Go to college, get a degree, and be able to support yourself. If you find a man who is able to support you, great! In the event that doesn’t happen, be able to support yourself.”
I heard my mom’s message loud and clear (It is the same message I give to Aubrey!). I internalized it from a young age. As I grew up, I saw no other path for my life than one of independence, self-reliance and breaking unhealthy patterns of behavior I’d been raised with. I see my mom as the most important foundation for who I am. She laid the base for the strong, resilient, self-supporting woman I am today.
Now that I’m parenting a teen, I see how important my own evolution is to Aubrey’s development. If I chose the path of repeating unhealthy patterns of behavior, they would likely be passed on to another generation. Instead, I’ve chosen to learn, grow and evolve, hoping each generation that comes after me will be happy, healthy, well-adjusted individuals.
What are you doing to break the patterns of unhealthy behavior you’ve been taught?
What steps are you taking to evolve?
How are you setting up future generations to thrive?