Friday, April 07, 2006

It’s Time to Grow Up

When do we decide that it is time to grow up? When do we decide that it is time to get proactive with our lives and not reactive? When do we get to take charge and take over?

I have been mulling those questions a lot as I look at the kids of today. I call them kids because they are the age of my kids: early twenties. But in history they really are not “kids” anymore. As few as 25 years ago most “kids” would get married while in, or finishing up college. As few as 50 years ago “kids” would get married as soon as they finished High School and some even before. As few as 100 years ago girls would get married at the ripe old age of 15 and boys the ancient 17. 1000 years ago as soon as you hit puberty and could consummate your wedding the arrangement made by your parents was fulfilled.

When you got married you would now become a responsible adult and take on the tasks of making a home and making a career. Many cultures have a rite of passage from childhood to adulthood like a bar mitzvah. When do kids today decide that it is time to grow up? I don’t know and in fact I believe some don’t even make that decision. They don’t want to grow up, they don’t want to take responsibility, they are fine with their parents and their peers running things.

I remember at about age 28 that it sunk into me that my father’s generation was not going to be in charge much longer and I had to take seriously the job of running my life, my business and my country. I just had the feeling that it was time for me to step up to the big leagues. As I plan for retirement now I pray my children and their generation will soon come to that realization too. I pray they come to it soon because I can see a time when I will really get tired of the world on my shoulders and be ready to pass it on.

Where are you? Are you struggling in the big leagues or are you still warming a bench in the minors? Here’s a few clues to help you interpret where you might be at: 1] Is your job just something you are doing until the right one comes along or is it your calling and your career? 2] Do you find yourself on CNN or FOX or do you find yourself watching MTV or VH1 or WB? 3] When you have a choice do you sleep in or work on a community project on an early Saturday morning?

Let’s all make our way to the big leagues. It’s time to grow up.

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