This isn't a recommendation to abandon the word "just." Sometimes it's useful or necessary. This is about those times when it's used to minimize or to discount an idea that should not be dismissed.
This is a request for people to look twice if the word "just" pops up.
Some parents I know simply don't have any foods they consider unhealthy in the houseMy response (June 2018):
For unschooling purposes, it's good to set an alarm to go off in your head about "just" or "simply."
What might seem simple (and easy, and "just doing...") can have ripples and repurcussions that could have been avoided, but that cannot be undone.
Original (viewable if one has a facebook account)
In 2012 someone wrote:
-=Unschooling for us is just living!-=-I responded:
It would be stronger without "just". 🙂
I always notice "just" now, and "have to."
Living isn't enough, though. Unschooling should be rich, flowing and mindful living where learning abounds. Too many people see "living" as nothing more than the absence of death. Let's encourage sparkly, bubbly, warm and effusive lives.
Rather than link to where I got it, I will say that some of the commenters pointed out that it was MORE than a handrail, and not "just" something. Good. Because it was facebook, and 2022, many people were complaining that the stairs were dirty, that it wasn't a great handrail... ("Just" complaints? 🙂 )
There's another section of art further up those stairs that's even longer and maybe better. It's in Germany, and the credit above is the sculptor, Karl-Henning Seemann.
Other mom wrote: I realize she didn't really need help but just wanted my attention.
The word "just" here popped out to me, as if you were dismissing the need for attention.What the mom really wrote was longer, and used "just" repeatedly:
I realize she didn't really need help but just wanted my attention. Between my other obligations and my personal feelings at the moment I just wasn't able to give it to her. I did spend some time with her it just wasn't as long as she wanted.Caren's response was longer too, and excellent. It's here: Re: Balance
Read before you post. Really read what you've written down. Maybe print it out and carry it around, and consider each phrase, each word. You're thinking in big lumps of emotion, and that's reactive, and reactionary.
You can't "just have" peace and joy.
Every time you use "just," see if you truly meant to, if it was a thoughtful choice, or if it's a simplifying noise.
Peace and joy will be made of a hundred tiny choices a day. Maybe more. Maybe fewer. But you can't decide it once, and you cannot "just have" it.
Building an Unschooling Nest
First, beware "just." If you write "just," see whether leaving it out makes the statement stronger.-=-I guess I'll feel my way?-=-
In the dark? Feel your way blindly?
How will you know which way to go?
Probably it would be better to gather ideas that will help with decision making and then make decisions in the bright light of everything you know, and the way you would like to be.
Be joyful about their discoveries, and sorrowful about their unhappiness even if your first thought is cynical or dismissive.
It's part of respect for the child, to consider that if he's unhappy it's the real unhappiness of a human, not "just kid stuff." (original, near the end)
“But he'll just play video games all day! He'll never DO anything!” If you give a kid a Nintendo...
Radical Unschooling vs. "Just' an unschooler