Let’s start with the basics - contrary to popular belief, millennials aren’t actually those born in the 2000’s, but those born between 1980-2000. The factor that makes the biggest splash when it comes to setting us apart from previous generations? The expectations we have, born out of the time of rapid change we’ve grown up in (Goldman Sachs). We’re a much larger generation (92 million v. the 61 million from our predecessor, Generation X), the first digital natives, more socially connected (thanks, Facebook!), have less money to spend, more debt, and most of all, have a whole different set of priorities. What makes our life count is different from what made the lives of our Generation X or Baby Boomer friends count.
Priorities, priorities, priorities...
In 1968, 56% of adults ages 18-31 were married and living in their own households. In 2012, that number was slashed in half. We’re staying single longer and choosing to live with parents or renting. This behavior goes hand in hand with our wild passion pursuing and dream chasing. We’ve grown up with access to so much more of the world than generations before and because of that, nothing is too far out of reach when it comes to setting goals. I was just at a young professionals networking event last night, and there were just about as many entrepreneurs as their were traditional 8-5’s. We have ideas, aren’t afraid to try them out, and take risks.
Beware of the Line Between Flighty and Ambitious
A lot of our parents started in a job fresh out of high school or college, climbed the ladder, and ended their careers at the same place 40 years later. Now, the new normal is four job changes before the age of 32 (CNN). Millennials have a reputation for getting bored, wanting salary increases without really deserving them, and not wanting to put in the hard work that marked generations past. There’s so much value in putting down roots at a company and growing with them for years, but the flip side of the coin is harnessing that ambitious spirit and seeking out new opportunities and challenges to learn and grow. The same goes for moving around to different cities and countries.
Give Yourself Grace
It’s really amazing to have access at your fingertips to check on what your friends and family are up to, but the downside is that being bombarded with photos and posts from other people’s lives lends itself to feelings of insecurity. “I wish I could travel that much,” “His job looks so much cooler than mine,” “Did you see how cute their engagement photos were?” We construct a social media identity that’s vastly more glamorous and let’s be honest, at the end of the day, most of us are curled up with Ben and Jerry’s, watching Netflix, and scrolling through our feeds comparing to each other and feeling jealous to some degree. It’s easier than ever to doubt yourselves. Be careful of the impact social media can have on you and give yourself some grace. After all, we’re all navigating the waters of life together.
So, be confident, take advantage of the wide opportunities that you have at your fingertips, remember that making life count is cultivated in being part of something way bigger than yourself. At BriO, we believe in the power of joy infusing positivity and life into the world we live in.