Another Voice: Society must create ways for young people to thrive | Opinion

As families and students struggle with the social, emotional, physical, and educational repercussions of Covid-19, it might seem a little too much to insist that we can still prepare our children (and ourselves) to lead thriving lives. But I fervently believe that we cannot postpone this mission while we wait for a vaccine. We must push ahead now to ensure our young people are prepared to thrive.

First, what does thriving mean? Interestingly, our verb “to thrive” is derived from an Old Norse word, which means to “grasp to oneself” or “to grab hold of.” In other words, to thrive is the lifelong development of the totality of yourself, including physical and emotional well-being that enables you to pursue a passionate purpose in your private and public lives.

Every person who is thriving is successful, but not every successful person is thriving. Leading a thriving life means so much more than merely professional success. To thrive is to experience continued growth and achievement physically, emotionally, psychologically and spiritually.

When we thrive, we are engaged in a purposeful and meaningful life. Encountering success in one domain while ignoring the rest is ultimately unfulfilling. If you become the CEO of your company but have lost your close friends, you will not thrive. If you achieve a personal record on your Peloton but find your job meaningless, you will not thrive.

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