Stereotypes are prevalent all around the world, but none as common as the stereotypes that exist between youth and the older generation. Examples are quite easy to find. Our favourite movie series’ often depict the older relative as frail and feeble, available for a rare dose of wisdom and thereafter the victim of a crude joke among friends.

We’re taught at school to excel and that an education is the only thing that nobody can take away from us. They’re right! This happens to be the case. Finishing school will be one of the most glorious moments of our lives. Our degrees, certificates and other qualifications will be the highlight of our twenties and thirties. Being young is quite a thrilling experience, but what happens when we’re older? Is there really no more to us than what we have to offer in the prime of our youth?

Perhaps we should re-adjust the lenses when it comes to how we view those older than us. After all, education is not the only thing that cannot be taken away from us. 

Experience is another.

How often have you seen a job advertisement for a senior employment opportunity, that requires a degree and no experience? When we have zero to no experience we’re usually classified as juniors. Once were gain experience, confidence and the insight needed for the job, our educational qualifications are amplified. This is usually when we’re promoted to a new level, which is always more senior. During the process of being a junior, we’re always trained by someone who has more experience and who knows the ropes, and is willing to teach them to us too.

See, when we look at things through a different lense our perspective changes. As much as our independence has to do with our resolve and commitment to progressing in life. We cannot deny that from time to time we need to consult someone with experience. Someone who has been there before and survived to tell the tale. Who better to consult than the older generation?

This goes beyond the home remedies that ALWAYS work. The older generation has the wisdom to assist us through some of life’s most challenging situations. We all get to an age where we utter “If only I listened to my parents” or “I should have taken my dad’s advice”.

Not all advice may be sound, but this does not mean we should disregard it as such, before listening to it at all. Someday you’ll be older too. Can you imagine being ignored because you just not ‘young’ anymore?. By then you would probably agree that with age comes wisdom.

The truth is we all need a helping hand now and again. And, no matter what the world tells you, the older, wiser ones ahead will always be better equipped to show the way you should go. Allow yourself to learn from them. In the same breath, life has had a significant, abrupt transformation in the past 20 years. The problems we are experiencing now are things no one could have ever even dreamt about, let alone anticipate. Learn to lean on much stronger support than anyone you could ever find on earth. A personal relationship with Jesus is all you will ever need to navigate the chaotic crossways of life on earth. Let that be the foundation upon which you build everything else.