As a teenager, we frequently visit malls. We hang around and spend time doing whatever we please to wild away time in malls with our friends. Today, I’m going to suggest that you try something totally radical and unexpected: GO GROCERY SHOPPING WITH YOUR PARENT(S)!
Yes, you read that right. Grocery shopping and with your parents. Let me first explain what grocery shopping means. Grocery shopping is basically an activity where one goes to the supermarket or retail store to primarily buy food and other non-food products such as clothing and household items.
Do teenagers do grocery shopping? Do teenagers want to do grocery shopping? NO! Teenagers find it ultimately boring to go grocery shopping once they reach the age of thirteen and have lost the pursuit of wonder they used to experience in their childhood. Today, I am going to give you some reasons on why as a teenager you should go grocery shopping.
1. Spend quality time with family
If you’re fortunate enough to have parents who go grocery shopping at a supermarket please do not underestimate this opportunity. You have at least an hour where you are able to spend quality time with your parent (usually your mum). This increased attention from a parent to a teenager can greatly improve the emotional and mental health of the teenager and therefore reduce social aberrations. You would also come to have a deeper and more intimate relationship with the parent you go grocery shopping with. Who said we do not have time to spend with family? The time and opportunities are there, all that is left for us to do is to acknowledge it and grasp it fully.
2. Understand your parent better
As I mentioned earlier, if you have a parent who goes grocery shopping, you are indeed a very fortunate child. When I went grocery shopping with my mum just a few days back, I instantly realized that despite being tired from work, she would do the shopping because the family needed it. Be it buying toilet rolls or vegetables to cook, a parent shows their love for their family members by doing things such as grocery shopping. You might not see it, but they do it—week in, week out. Do we thank them half as much as we should? Probably not!! One way to thank them and show your appreciation for what they do is to accompany them and help them out during grocery shopping. Furthermore, by joining them we can see how they care about us—how they purposely get that favorite tub of ice-cream for us, how they pick out that favorite cereal/biscuit of ours that we have daily for breakfast, how they choose the better vegetables just for us to have a better state of nutrition, the list goes on. Ultimately, observing your parent while they are grocery shopping can help us as teenagers to truly understand our parents deeper.
“To be shown love is to feel ourselves the object of concern: our presence is noted, our name is registered, our views are listened to, our failings are treated with indulgence and our needs are ministered to. And under such care, we flourish.”
3. Learn contentment
As teenagers, we are constantly exposed to a barrage of ideas and philosophies. Sports advertisements, product advertisements and social media posts that bring about envy into our subconscious minds. We want the latest gadget, we want to wear the branded items, we want to have more material things in our lives. We have ultimately become human beings whose cravings are never going to be satisfied and will never master the art of contentment. That is why some have embraced minimalism in arts and music.
How does grocery shopping help solve this problem? They don’t seem related you say?
Well it is. Supermarkets compared to malls offer us our needs whereas malls offer us our wants. Take for instance the vegetables and fruits we see in supermarkets and the food from cafes we see in malls. Sure, the food in cafes may seem nicer and may in fact be nicer but at what cost? Double or triple the price of a meal prepared from items bought in a supermarket? Is it worth it—this indulgence of spending as teenagers, when we can buy cheaper clothes, eat cheaper meals and save the family resources? Furthermore, when you see the thriftiness of your parent when they grocery shop (how they try to get the most value for money even by saving a few cents), it would really help us question the way we are spending our money as teenagers—money we got from our parents. I’m not saying that spending money in malls is wrong, but moderation and contentment is the key in spending money.
If you observe the world carefully, you will soon realize that everybody is fighting to climb the corporate ladder. Why, you may ask? To earn more money, duh! But, does anyone of them look at their lifestyles? The houses and cars they buy and the money and time they can save just by being more contented? To each his own.
4. Create memories
In line with a book I have read on time hacking (time management), it is true that grocery shopping would help us to create memories with our parents. “Where we spend our time is how we spend our lives”. In the end, our parents and us only have so much time. That storage of time in the bank for each and every one of us can never be replenished. Why do people speak of regrets so often during funerals? Bad time management skills I say. Today, instead of spending even more time on your phone, go out and create memories with your parent. I am sure it would be a pleasant surprise for them to see you come along to do grocery shopping. It would be a sweet memory for them especially if you have never done it before. YOLO rite? As a teenager leaving for college soon, I really am starting to treasure these limited time with my family I still have, I hope you do too.
“..if a moment is remembered, no matter how quickly it passed, that moment lasts forever”
In the end, it is up to each and everyone of you whether you would like to take my advice and go grocery shopping with you parent. If you do, I hope you do it with an open mind and heart in order to gain the most from the experience. As for me, I’m definitely going on the next grocery trip!
Thank you for reading.