Have you seen Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman’s new book Nurture Shock? They presents the idea that we are raising kids to deny their impulse to follow their dreams by filling their time with school and after school programs and other safe modes of living. We rarely leave them to just sit with themselves and follow their bliss. Or take on real-life risks. And the result is they get bored, refuse to leave home, don’t know anything about themselves. They are sleeping through their lives and don’t have a clue where their passion lies.
Bronson and Merryman are essentially saying we are born with instincts to follow our Virgin’s journey and society is working against it. Fortunately we are all drawn to stories and the Virgin Archetype in stories shows the way to overcome this Dependent World and follow your dream. Bronson suggests that following this journey actually rewires your brain. The more you enter the Secret World where you can follow your dream, the more dopamine spritzes your brain and encourages you to pursue what you love until you No Longer Fit Your World. The Virgin learns to shake up her world and pursue her loves. And the whole Kingdom benefits from her risk taking.
How wonderful it would be if we could parent and school our teenagers in ways that promoted the Virgin and the Hero’s journeys.