#millennialproblems + solutions
If you were born between the years x and x, chances are you've probably been accused of being "entitled", "lazy" or "whiny" when it comes to your own personal journey of coming into your own. It feels a little unfair that while we are working hard to meet the expectations of the generation, or generations that came before us, we are told that we are not doing enough, trying enough or working hard enough to make our mark. (I mean, I don't know about you but I'd certainly feel like contributing more to society if I didn't still have over $100,000 of student debt looming over my head.) So the question becomes: how do we, as the largest, most educated and also most stressed-out generation do all the things we need to in order to succeed while also building lives that are meaningful? The answer: However you can.
On "All Groan Up", I read some very interesting statistics about the generation I'm a part of and how to turn the generational differences between millennials and other age groups into a conversation that can affect real change in how we view ourselves. Many, if not most, of our peers are educated beyond high school which makes for an even more competitive workforce and frustrating young adult experience where the cost of education, among other things, is crazy high. In order to take ownership over our young adulthood, many millennials work two (if not more) jobs or spend their off-hours doing more to bolster their resumes. At one point, I was working 40 hours a week, a part-time gig in retail AND teaching dance on the weekends. It's a lot but nobody ever said adult-ing was going to be easy.
But there are some serious perks that come with learning as you grow in this day and age and definitely reasons to celebrate being a twentysomething. Here's a list so that instead of wallowing in your not-so-funemployment, underemployment or student loan debt, you can finally start to appreciate or better yet, market, the skills you've acquired while mastering being resilient:
1. Self-care is a THING. I'm not just talking about taking naps to escape the world either. Self-care, at least for grown-ups, is not going out on the weekend after a busy week because you feel bad saying "no". It's getting your butt to the gym because you need to blow off some steam and taking a break from social media so that you can focus on what is in front of you. It's different things for different people and only you know how to best take care of you.
2. To steal a concept from "All Groan Up", you do not feel entitled to success, you are obsessed with it. Because the journey is defined a little differently, you look forward to getting there. The most competitive millennials likely have a timeline (the dreaded "five year plan") as a guideline. We are used to be wait-listed and so we fight harder to beat it.
3. You can be creative. Whether you've adopted a side-hustle or just know how to make your laundry money last you an extra week, you take less-than-ideal situations and make them live-able.
4. You have learned to budget. Managing money is a serious skill. And because being low on funds isn't cute, you know the value of a dime. Literally and figuratively.
5. You know comparing yourself to others is a waste of time. Social media is simply the highlight reel not the hustle.
6. Your definition of success comes with a sense of pride. Whether you are saving for your first apartment, paying off your student loans or getting your dream job, you know that nothing comes easy and almost always is accompanied by some kind of sacrifice.
7. You re-calibrate after expectations are not met. When things don't go your way, you don't have a meltdown. When you don't get the promotion you're up for, you ask for feedback so you can improve. Being an adult is about learning to adapt.
What are some strategies you've learned from surviving your quarter-life crisis? What is your best advice for other millennials? Sound off in the comments!