"Scott. You look like you are carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders. Lighten up, kiddo!" I must have heard this phrase from my parents a million times. Now as I spend my career working in the field of genealogy at Onward To Our Past®, I think it is an apt phrase for many who pursue their ancestry, genealogy, and family history.
The more I read the more I see real connections between genealogy/working on our family history/ancestry and the psychological benefits of the nostalgia it might trigger!
Who was it that inspired YOU to really 'get into' genealogy and family history? Who was the person, or were the people, who were responsible for igniting your passion to delve into learning who you were, where your roots had been planted, and what that common word 'family' really means?
Rather than suggesting resolutions here, I am going to offer some commonsense suggestions that will, I believe, help make your family history and genealogy efforts more effective and successful
My biggest breakthroughs, most significant finds, and most amazing discoveries have all come from not who I already knew, but from new associates, allies, mentors, and researchers who I had never known before I employed my system of casting the widest net possible whenever I hit a bumpy patch in my work.
My geneatherapy has helped me, my family, my extended family, old friends, new friends and colleagues, and provided me with endless (and I do mean endless) hours, to which my wife will attest, of learning and losing myself in subjects I never dreamed I would find an interest in earlier in my life.
Even though our children and grandchildren are all over a thousand miles away, their special gifts went winging their way to them so they all could celebrate St. Nicholas Day in style...and I am happy to report that there was no need for us to buy any coal!
Now some years later as a genealogical historian, father, and grandfather, I really love family gatherings all the more. Not only for the family time and memories, but also for the exceptional opportunity they afford to enhance what I like to call 'the tapestry of our family history'.
The more inviting we make genealogy, the more we will entice others to join us in our family history, love of genealogy, and our ancestral journeys!
While I fully understand and appreciate their frustration, one of the factors I find that often influences this frustration is what I call the 'Rose-Colored Glasses Effect' and it needs to be avoided in everyone's family history and genealogy work.