I recently read an article in Time magazine in which I had the opportunity to read about what is being coined the “Me, Me, Me, Generation”. The article was The New Greatest Generation– Why the Millennials will save us all (by Joel Stein) From the very beginning I found myself already stereotyping what I thought this generation was all about, just by reading a few of the first sentences! I continued to read on and by the end of the article, I found myself actually rethinking my first thoughts! Apparently all generations have a “label” of some sort. The three main ones that come to mind are The Baby Boomers,(1940’s through 1960)– Generation X (GenXers),(1960’s through the 70’s) and (the generation Y-ers) more recently called the Millennials (1980-2000). I found it interesting to discover that they had called the Baby Boomer Generation the “Me” generation, and now they are calling Baby Boomer’s children the ME ME ME generation! Just a bit humorous, if ironic. In a way, Millennials are being labeled pretty harshly though… narcissistic, lazy, over-confident, entitled…. even coddled, or delusional. Narcissistic, which means: full of excessive love or admiration of one’s self…lack of empathy and deficits in self esteem. Initially I thought that these labels were pretty accurate, but as I got to reading, I realized that other very valid points were brought up… such as even though these Millennials may very well encompass all of those traits a bit more than past generations, in all fairness, they were born into an advanced sociological and technological age that made it easy for them to become that way. It isn’t their entire “fault”, if you will. It was even stated that they might also just be a bit nicer than people from other generations. Perhaps a little more considerate, or accepting of others, even if perhaps they might come across as a bit more “entitled”! Is it possibly a result of having been “coddled”?! While the Millenials may be labeled, among other things, narcissistic, I read another article in my many meanderings across the web, touching on the Time article subject, and in it they had mentioned that the Baby Boomers had been labeled as “Ennui” (pronounced En Wee) which means: (a feeling of weariness or discontent) lack of interest, boredom. I don’t think that sweeping generalization is exactly fair to all Baby Boomers, either…. An interesting parallel in the two generations…don’t you think? It gave me pause to think.
The Time Magazine article really gets you to thinking, if you read it in its entirety. He starts the article with the requisite stats and expounds from there. I already had it in my mind when I read the words Narcissistic and entitled that the Millennials had some serious issues! It wasn’t until I had read through it, and then read some additional opinions on the internet that my own horizons on the topic were broadened. I guess perhaps I come from the “closed-minded” generation…. (NOT!)….because as I discovered, even that generalization cannot begin to describe any group of people in any given generation. Each generation “grows”, if you will, its own set of astounding and unique individuals. Everyone has their own set of new challenges, and different ways for people to “come into their own”. I realized that there will continue to be newer generations all of the time… each with a special label, each with their own positives and negatives. Personally, the positives of each generation far outweigh the negatives. Look at the example of how much more open our society today is toward social issues, than it was just 30 years ago! I’m starting to believe that the teens and 20 somethings that make up this “Me, Me, ME”, Millennials Generation aren’t so bad after all! I think I can hang sharing the world with the up and coming generations…how about you!? Just a whole new set of challenges to look forward to!
To read the TIME Magazine article in it’s entirety click this link: