“Millennials have been taught to always be right”
I heard this phrase last week and jotted it down in my notebook. I find the millennial generation, my generation, particularly interesting. This generation is generally born from the early 1980’s to the early 2000’s. That’s a pretty wide gap where a lot of individuals fall. We have been titled the “Me” generation, focusing on ourselves, our careers and putting our priorities first. Other words like arrogant, stubborn, and entitled are thrown around to describe this generation.
Millennials have been raised by mainly helicopter parents who wanted to give their children everything. Most were raised to believe everyone got a trophy for participating despite their losing record. The mantra “not my child” has been embraced by our parents. My child could not have possibly done this or that wrong. I am not saying this is every parent or every child, but it is the vast majority, as cited in this Time Magazine article. We were taught to be right.
With this concept in mind, millennials come across with an almost cocky attitude, that they are invisible and that the world owes them something. Now bring that into the workforce or into personal relationships. It doesn’t make for a good time. I’ve observed my generation act this way and have seen their lack of motivation and drive. Certainly, I am not perfect and can fall into the negative stereotype of a millennial. My questions for my readers: When do we as a generation become accountable for ourselves and how do we combat the negative stereotype?
Regardless of how you were raised or by whom, by the time we graduate college, we are adults and are responsible for ourselves. No matter what your parents told you, it’s now your turn to be in charge of your destiny. You cannot blame your parents (or anyone else) for your insecurities, regrets or any other challenges you face. All that has come to you is a privilege you work for, not a right.
For those millennials who fall outside of the stereotype, my advise is to prove them wrong. I realize, easier said than done. But go into every conversation, at work or at home, prepared with your points and questions. Be articulate and confident (not cocky) in your abilities. If you have worked hard, you earned that seat at the table.
I’d love to hear your thoughts about the millennial generation and how you personally interact with them. Comment below!