The word Millennial defines those born between 1980 and 2000. Over the years however, the word has become associated with all sorts of negativity. In fact when typing into Google ‘Millennials are…’ it prepopulates suggested searches including ‘Millennials are… doomed, poor, losers, helpless, killing 2019’. I know I’m definitely guilty of trying to disassociate myself with this group, but why? Why aren’t I (and we as society) prouder of being a millennial? After all, many of the difficulties that we face are a product of a completely different generation. I decided to reassess my beliefs about millennials, and I’ve come up with a number of reasons why I am proud to be one.
We Work Hard
It’s thought that in 2020 millennials will make up 75% of the global workforce, logically I guess this makes sense with many of us now well into our 30’s, and our prime working years. However, I don’t remember the last time I spoke to anyone my age who worked a 9-5. Yes I work in sales and so maybe a 50+ hour week is the norm, but I also know many teachers, charity workers, healthcare professionals and retail workers who would argue the same. Couple this with the fact that most of us will be working well into our late 60’s/70’s before we can retire, not to mention the crippling debt that we university goers face/faced, it’s a pretty bleak picture! So yes, we might like some fruit in the office, or not want to wear corporate dress Monday-Friday, but given the amount we contribute to the economy I think whoever searched, ‘Millennials are killing 2019’, was being a little harsh!
We’re Are Able To Save For Houses and Support Ourselves
According to a recent article in the Guardian, in the world the UK millennials are ranked as being the second worst hit financially after the Greek millennials. Lucky us, no wonder we need to work so many hours! In spite of this we are still working hard to get up that property ladder. Within my close group of friends we’ve all managed to buy our own home, and without handouts from our parents.
I look around those that I’m surrounded by at work and it’s a similar picture – they work hard and they save. Although many are in nearly £50,000 student debt, paying extortionate rent (often amounts that are more than my mortgage repayments), they’re still able to save and maintain a social life!
We’re Spinning So Many Plates
Although the generations that precede may claim that we have it easy, and we’re all too busy on our phones to realise what’s going on, I’d argue that it’s actually the opposite. Between working longer hours, saving for a property, keeping in touch with friends and family, trying to figure out a future plan, campaigning for change in areas like gender equality, veganism(!), the environment, not to mention having to keep up to date with whatever political party is dictating our future – we have a lot to deal with. Rightly or wrongly, our phones are often what enables us to do so!
Don’t get me wrong there is plenty about my generation I dislike; the constant posting on social media, selfie after selfie after selfie, and the odd comment about how we should be able to nap at work. But look beyond that and I’m not actually sure millennials are much different to how other generations have been. Maybe a little more global, thanks to our phones and the internet but personally I think if you look a little closer we’re just trying to make our own way in the world, the best way we know how.