Let me be transparent here — I’m not obsessed with social media. I’d much prefer my social interactions to be face to face. Having said that, I do write a blog and I like Facebook to keep in touch with family and friends, near and far.

I’m a Facebook creeper. Two of my four grandkids have Facebook accounts, and I love seeing the pictures they post. The oldest did tell me that she only posts for her parents and grandparents — the “older” family members. Occasionally I comment on a post, but I never post anything myself. I don’t take the tests to see how I will look in fifty years, or what my name would be if I were a movie star. However, I did see one post recently that caught my eye — “Five Things to Quit Right Now”.

Five Things to QUIT Right Now

1. Trying to please everyone.

2. Fearing change.

3. Living in the past.

4. Putting yourself down.

5. Overthinking.

I thought about it and came up with my answers to each of the five questions. Then I wondered how my grandkids would respond. Were the “Five Things to QUIT Right Now” words of wisdom for everyone, young and old? Would females and males respond differently? I decided on my answers and then asked my grandkids. Here’s how it went.

Words of Wisdom

1. Trying to please everyone.

When there was a conflict at work I always tried to reach an agreement. Maybe I couldn’t please everyone, but coming to an understanding was always important especially when working with students, parents and staff. Now that I’m retired I still try, but I don’t know if I argue or have differences of opinion with anyone other than my husband and politicians.

I asked the grandkids if they always tried to please everyone. Out of the three girls who responded, they were on a spectrum from, “always” to “when necessary” to “ I’ve stopped trying to please everyone. I just do my thing.”

2. Fearing change.

When I was working I needed to be the leader of change. I admit some of those changes were my ideas and others were mandated. Either way, I tried many ways to achieve my goals. I discovered that a positive spin or sense of humor was the best way to get my message across.

In retirement, I don’t think I fear change. I just have the opportunity to avoid it when necessary. Well, maybe I do fear technology. But I always know who to ask for help. Yep, the grandkids.

When I asked my granddaughters if they feared anything the responses varied around “it depends”. They decided that change doesn’t create fear if there is a sense of familiarity, like starting a new year in high school. My granddaughters stressed that experiencing a change in a comfortable setting, or with people you know, feels relatively easy.

3. Living in the past.

I don’t live in the past, but I try to remember the past. Yep, I have good days and bad days. My grandkids ask me about my past, but I think they get bored after the first 10 minutes of my simply wonderful stories. Either their attention span has not improved since they were 8 or my stories are not as wonderful as I think.

Each of the girls admitted that they have no concept of living in the past. They remember being little, playing with friends, but actually living in the past? No. That’s not something they’ve really experienced.

4. Putting yourself down.

I don’t believe I put myself down, but I have limitations. Being a math wizard is not one of my strengths. I know it, and I’m okay with it. Thank goodness for calculators!

All of my granddaughters agreed this was something they wanted to quit doing. They admitted that most of the putting down feeling was self-induced and they really want to work as a team on accepting themselves for who they are.

5. Overthinking.

Overthinking is not a whole thought process for me. I don’t have a lot of time to overthink things. I’m far too random. I’m the person who is distracted by a dog walking by the house.

However, I do overthink problems I think my grandkids may be experiencing. I don’t butt in unless I am asked to give my input. So far, that’s never happened. All our grandkids are pretty independent, and if they aren’t, their parents are handling it. I just overthink the situation from afar.

My granddaughters didn’t believe they overthought things a great deal. But they did find themselves overthinking more when the decision was a big one. They all felt that they’re independent and always tried to make decisions without parental help first.

What We Learned

Each of my three granddaughters readily shared her thoughts with me and agreed that these were things they needed be aware of or quit. They all agreed these were areas they struggled with, and they needed to stop. “Yes, this is all 100% true!” “I’ve got to do a better job of quitting these things!”

One granddaughter did say she doesn’t try to please everyone anymore. “I stopped trying to please everyone a long time ago.” I bet her mom would agree. Our grandson didn’t want to talk about my questions, and I let it go. My questions probably sounded too much like work for him. No homework in the summer! If I were to guess, he’d agree with all the things to quit, he just won’t admit that he thinks they’re important. There may be little difference in responses by age, but there is a difference in response by gender. Go figure.

Maybe next week, I’ll ask them what the grandkids need to “start doing” instead of quitting. Or, maybe I’ll just give my grandson a break.

Nancy Becker

Nancy Becker

Grandkids & Grandparents

I have four grandchildren ages 14-17. In some ways, I’m a very typical grandma, always proud of everything the kids do and wanting to help support them in whatever way I can. In other ways, I’m not very typical. My goal as a blogger is to share my thoughts and experiences that I think are funny and meaningful as I adventure through grandmahood.

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