274 - Why Don’t Young People Hear the Branch Creak?

Episode: 274

Episode Title: Why Don’t Young People Hear the Branch Creak?

Branch creaks are the crisis moments in life that spur us into action. But what if young people just aren’t hearing the branch creak? Let’s talk about it, next on The Perna Syndicate.


Ep 274 show:

Welcome—you’re now in The Perna Syndicate! If you’ve ever heard me give a keynote, you know my story about the branch creak. Climbing trees was one of my favorite activities as a kid, and one day I ventured out a little too far. The branch below me started to creak, and I knew it was about to break. In that terrifying moment I did three things: I focused, planned, and took action. 


Today, I see the branch creak as a metaphor for any of the punches that life throws at us. You’re going along, things seem fine, when suddenly you hear that warning creak and you know you’re about to crash down…unless you can focus, make a plan, and take the action to save yourself. 


It seems that many young people aren’t hearing the branch creak in their education and career journey. They’re just coasting, no worries, no consequences…and no drive to achieve everything they’re capable of.


When I ask my audiences why students aren’t hearing the branch creak, I get a variety of answers: they never go outside, we don’t let them go out on a limb, we have so many safety nets that it doesn’t matter if they fall, they aren’t even in the tree, et cetera. And you know, they’re all correct. 


Sometimes we have to fail before we see the value of success. Sometimes the hard way is the only way we’re going to learn. Young people are no different from those of us in older generations in this respect. Without a sense of urgency or a fear of loss, often we lack the motivation to focus, plan, and take action for our own future. Sometimes, the best thing we can do for young people is let that branch creak for them. 


Tomorrow, what about the kids whose branch creaked too soon? It happens every day, but we can help. See you back here tomorrow on The Perna Syndicate!

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