judging generations practice judging generations practice
One way to find appreciation is to remember what you’ve forgotten. In order to respect other, especially younger, generations it’s helpful to remind yourself of that time in your life. You shouldn’t try to put yourself in the shoes of today’s society. Each generation has its own specific challenges that are difficult to relate to. Instead, you should try to put your mindset back in time. By placing yourself in the mind of your past self, you’ll hopefully be able to acknowledge and enjoy the uniqueness of childhood.
Everyone comes from various backgrounds, so how we grew up and experienced childhood differs. But even those who experienced hard times growing up still had some glimmers of light in the darkness. So the goal is to remember and then recreate those moments of light -the times of true joy. In this practice you’ll make a list that celebrates your childhood.
Begin by tapping back into your childhood memories. Do your best to recall or visualize when you were young and carefree. Perhaps it helps to find some old pictures, watch home videos, or reminisce with family members to jog your memories. Once you feel like you can remember aspects of your childhood, you can begin to rediscover what brought you joy.
*Beginner* Use your childhood memories to create a list of what brought you joy when you were young. What were your favorite home-cooked meals and your favorite takeout food? Which toys did you value the most? Who was your best friend? What shows or movies made you laugh or brought you comfort when you were sick? Where did you go on your most memorable trip or vacation? Did you have a favorite holiday to celebrate? Think of anything at all that made you smile or brought you anticipation and happiness as a kid.
*Advanced* Once you’ve finished with the list you can pick a day or week to reacquaint yourself with items on the list. Challenge yourself to recreate some of your favorite foods, watch your favorite movie from when you were 10, or lay outside and see shapes in the clouds like you used to.
It’s important to remind yourself of your own childhood and adolescence so that you can have more compassion and understanding. When you celebrate your own childhood and relive the joy, it benefits not just you but everyone you encounter. Not only does it help reconnect you to your true self, but it also allows you to appreciate and respect that time in life for others too. Imagine that you’re still the child version of yourself and everyone you come into contact with is the child version of themselves. Do you think we’d be as quick to judge one another?
Deep down you are still the kid you once were, just with more life experiences and expectations. So the next time you’re confronted with the opportunity to judge or complain about another generation, challenge yourself to see them as you. Remember what it’s like not have a worry in the world, and don’t become one for them.
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