Why is it that we learn all about reading, writing and arithmetic or math’s, when we go to school but they leave the real learning to chance? We can choose to take on an apprenticeship to learn all about building houses or study business science to get a degree. The one thing where there just isn’t a standard is the one thing where we are all fingers and thumbs and we are expected to do a perfect job

I’m talking, of course, about bringing a child into this world and then bringing the little bundle up to be “healthy wealthy and wise” No mean feat, in actual fact, it’s a miracle that any parent survives considering the trauma we put ourselves through

Now if you are young enough to remember your childhood (I hope we all are) then you will remember the good times and the bad times, the times you got the blame and the ones you “got away with”. The thing is, just think of your parents… going about the day to day chore of trying to bring you up in a way that is acceptable to others or at least to themselves. Trying to make ends meet whatever their wage packet was… and still include some fun into the mix.

A lot of parents gave up on the fun and just stuck to getting through another day, week, year and we all have sad tales or glad, we can relate or we have heard. So let’s look at us now. We didn’t turn out too bad, did we? Even if we had the most traumatic childhood ever… if you are reading this then what got you to this place where you are now?

Was it because of, or, in spite of the way we were bought (dragged) up?
Does it really matter?
The important thing is that we made it and we can learn from the mistakes or the teachings of our parents.

With so many new babies appearing at the moment, it is a good time to reflect on our own upbringing and acknowledge that what ever happened, we did all right as kids… and therefore, some thanks must go to our folks. Whether they were mean or kind… you are here now and that’s the greatest achievement.

Now getting back to this manual, this instruction booklet (or will it be an encyclopedia?) of the A to Z of babies through to adult with special sections included to encompass difficulties, puberty and of course, the dreaded first zit.

Many of us will remember that first day arriving back home with our firstborn and that sudden realization that we just didn’t have a clue what on earth to do. That sinking feeling of despair when you discover that you can’t take the little bundle of completely dependant life, back to the shop for a refund… and how that despair turned to sheer frustration when this bundle of so called joy cries for the entire night and while you still have to get up and go to work (whether that be at home or elsewhere.) Did I say get up? I forgot that you didn’t even get to bed.

Where was the manual?

Where were the lessons?

Well, it didn’t take long to figure out that the lesson was going to be lifelong and continuous. Just when you thought you had it sorted, the next phase comes along just to let you know that you aren’t supposed to know everything.

Hey, remember when we did know it all?

… round about when we were 18 to 21 years old. Maybe a bit younger or maybe a bit older but I, sure as the sun rises, bet that you hadn’t just walked into your own home with a brand new baby.

It always interests me when these younger folk think that we don’t have a clue about what they are going through when it hits the fan… and if you are one of “them” and you are reading this, then don’t feel picked on, we all are surviving as best we can and although we may have mellowed or got grumpier we are still young at heart. I can remember my Grandfather telling everyone about “The Beatles” back in 1964. I was 7 years old at the time and later on, I was horrified that he could think that way

He wrote

They’ve been –and a new word is born- Beatlemania. Four callow youths with uncut hair and uncouth manners – a fitting drawcard for a commercial racket built up on the gimmick of screaming noise. Like Queen Victoria – “we are not amused.” We enjoy the high spirits of our young folk when it bubbles up out of natural fun. We do not enjoy having to provide a cordon of police protection around teenage mobs specially assembled for the purpose of being incited to scream themselves into a hypnotic state of mass hysteria. The Beatles mean nothing to us, but our young folk do, and beatlemania is unhealthy and degrading. Without the calculated publicity of press, radio and television, this thing never could have happened. The senseless exploitation of teenage emotions is carrying commercialism beyond the bounds of common decency

I always remind myself of this paragraph when I get the feeling that I want to criticise some new gimmick or group or type of music. This paragraph shaped my idea on new developments in any field and how important new ideas are to follow.

The Beatles went on to be one of the most successful bands ever and it is with the benefit of hindsight that most of us “oldies” can view today’s fashions and remember that we too wanted to stick it to the oldies of the time (when we were younger)

So we all get older and the manual doesn’t seem to become any more accessible or understandable. Despite the internet and computing we are still at the whim of the next generation of babies and children and we certainly wouldn’t want it any other way.

Have a great week

Cheers… Bill

Bill Gray

Bill is a Business Coach. Working with Individuals, Businesses and Organisations to create better environments and to develop and enhance business ”potential”, into successful business practices.

Sydney, Australia

Ph +61 413 949 521

Copyright ©Bill Gray All Rights Reserved 2004.