As we get older (as we all are every day) the goal is to get smarter, better, and be full of hope and joy. A word I like to describe all those things at once is “maturity.”
Without the benefit of experience and wisdom, Immaturity dictates you approach delightful things with an air of disdain and cynicism. Immaturity thinks it makes you look smarter to not admit you like comic books or musicals. It even means you don’t notice the natural world around you – plants, birds, laughing children and twinkling stars go unnoticed. Twenty-something friends, this doesn’t make you mature, it robs you of happiness. When I think back to the smug kid I was growing up in Palo Alto – a place it’s really easy to be smug and cynical by the way – it makes me a little sad of all the moments of joy I cost myself.
Maturity says you grab joy in every little way you can, minute by minute. One of my dear friends made her way into my heart the at a New Year’s Eve party where neither of us knew virtually anyone. A house party, they had Dick Clark’s countdown on their big-screen TV. After the announcer said who the upcoming entertainers would be, in a quiet moment she said a little too loudly: “I love Kelly Clarkson!” (She had just won American Idol) More silence followed. We looked at each other and cracked up, laughing until we cried. Embarrassing? You bet. But it made me love her joie de vivre. So twenty-somethings let that be your goal: go get you some joie de vivre and admit you love Glee.
“Most people don’t grow up. Most people age. They find parking spaces, honor their credit cards, get married, have children, and call that maturity. What that is, is aging.”
— Maya Angelou