To all the millennials out there born between 1982 and 2002, I feel the pain of being apart of a generation that is given little credit for rolling with the changing, albeit incredibly competitive, times. Here's a list of a few of the most stressful things about being a millennial that you may empathise with and indeed, nod along to.
1. Fear of failure
Perhaps your childhood was tricky, with a few financial difficulties that meant you resented the times when your friends came into school, boasting about the latest gadget their parents had bought them. Maybe yours struggled to put dinner on the table, let alone buy you the latest iPhone. Perhaps you had a friend that you lost to drugs, or an older sibling that got kicked out of school. Whatever it was that has given you that extra level of anxiety about your own future, you don't want it to resemble your own. Although we know that perfection isn't attainable, we push ourselves to come fairly close. This way of thinking isn't always the best for us, and indeed, it can frequently cause us to burnout. Pursuing our ambitions needs to be balanced out with making time to chill out.
2. We're supposed to be married by now
It was only the other day that I was sitting in the lounge with a relation of mine, having that typical conversation about how time really does fly, only to internally eye-roll at their following statement, "you'll be married soon I'd expect". When you have so many areas of your life to juggle, your family, friends, education, work, in addition to your relationships; searching for a spouse, is not necessarily the first thing on your agenda. Being expected to conform to societies idea of normality, thus making us feel like our lives are inadequate, is hardly what we need.
3. Student debt
There is no shortage of negativity in the media surrounding student fees. Constantly shoved down our throats is the reminder that we will be drowning in debt the minute that we graduate. By why don't we see any optimism? Many students that go to university are motivated, hard-working and driven, with an intent on one day earning enough so that paying back SLC is not such an ominous prospect.
4. We can't have it all
Between working our 9-5's, food preparation to ensure we're eating healthy, staying updated on the latest news, seeing our friends, spending time with our family, going to the gym, catching up on our favourite Netflix series, dating, working on outside projects, maintaining our hobbies and trying to be cultured, there's simply not enough time in the day. Period. We struggle to walk in a clear direction because we aren't sure what to prioritise and we can't choose what matters to us the most.
5. We can't get away from our phones
Updates from the news service app, unopened texts, snaps, emails and facetime notifications. Our mobiles are causing us to feel way more anxiety than we should. Annoyingly, living in a digital age, we just can't seem to avoid them. When it comes to peace of mind and productivity, millennials are slowly moving towards deleting apps, opting for a silent setting or pressing the power button. Mental health comes first.
6. We're sleep deprived
With so much going on in our lives, trying to cram in way more than we can physically manage, we don't blink an eyelid when our friends tell us they had 2-3 hours sleep last night because they needed to finish an assignment. The thing is, it shouldn't be #standard when eight hours sleep is what we need to function at our best. The key, it seems, is doing less, and doing it better.