A lot has been said about attracting younger people to one’s group to rejuvenate and revitalize it. This, on surface, sounds like a reasonable suggestion, but what is the actual experience like? The generations are as different as they are alike. Regardless of age, we love, are loved, rear families, work to provide for ourselves and others, have things we enjoy and things we dislike, have things we value highly and things that are not so important. The four biggest groups are “Traditionalists,” “Baby Boomers,” “Generation Xers” and “Millennials” and each has certain preferences associated with it.
It is really important to be aware of our differences and commonalities. We do not want to turn off the very people we wish to attract by a lack of awareness. Spend time discussing where we can best come together and work as a team. Find the points on which we strongly agree and build on them. Focus on the positive. Some of us like a hierarchy order, some prefer consensus, some like to challenge and some are achievement driven. While the approaches are different, all of us want to move forward to meet our goals. So, let’s aim to include everyone in achieving the mission and not insist that only one method will get us there.
Put another way, all of us know we need to get off the couch and move. However, some of us are runners, some are swimmers, some are bikers, some are skaters and some are walkers. No one activity is right or best for all of us. Precious energy is lost complaining about the challenge. Let’s look beyond our differences, to find a way to stimulate the necessary changes to allow everyone to be successful.
By Amy Dafoe January 24, 2018
Im the youngest member of our chapter (31) and we have a night time chapter.. I love it, because I work during the day and night.. so its convenient for me.. but I have struggled with my weight since I was a teenager.. and it followed me into adult hood.
By Julie Averill January 23, 2018
I think it’s about taking that first step. It begins with joining, interacting, supporting others and volunteering your talents. There is no other organization like TOPS…..we’re family.
By Sherry jeffries January 22, 2018
Most of the young folk work during the day and we oldies don’t want to be out at night, especially in the snow belt.
By Barb Cady January 23, 2018
There are always wonderful opportunities for inclusion in chapters. Daytime chapters are perfect for young mothers of school age children who do not work. They can drop the kiddos at school and check in at chapter before heading home to tend to other repsonsibilities. Also, daytime chapters often fill a need for those who work midnights like so many of our health care workers and factory workers do. Keep thinking positively about who your potential membership might be.
By Barb Cady January 22, 2018
Helping and encouraging new members to be as successful as possible in their journey comes first. I remember when I joined how much the ladies in my chapter supported my efforts to lose. my success made me want to pay back to those who helped me and to reach out to help others. I wanted to take my turn. If they had pressured me to “take over” in the beginning, I might have not stayed.
By Phyllis Jirousek March 20, 2018
I just had a new member walk up to me today after our meeting and thank me for being empathetic to the struggles that members have. I told her that we are a support group and we have all been there before and we truly understand the ups and downs of losing weight. Support and understanding is so important to a new member. Thanks Barb for the reminder.
By Dianne House January 22, 2018
I just wish we could get some younger people to come, to take over the chapter. Seams like the young people today wants a quick fix or someone to do it for them.
By Leif January 30, 2018
Generalizations like this are what will continue to age TOPS out and keep those that are younger from wanting to be a part of TOPS. As a younger member, this type of comment isn’t at all appreciated and shows a general lack of respect.
By Barb Cady January 31, 2018
Thanks so much, Leif. we always need to let each other know how we feel, what helps us most and what gets in the way.