5 Stereotypes Millennials are Tired of Hearing

 

Millennials (also known as Generation Y) are born roughly between 1980 and 1997, granting me the title of a Millennial. First, I would like to say that every generation is thought to have their own distinctive characteristics, millennials being no different. However, I have heard way too many negative stereotypes against my generation, and I’m tired of it. The millennial generation is perhaps the most researched generation and somehow, we are still the most misunderstood. Millennials are commonly referred to as the worst generation to date; lacking emotion, concentration, and motivation. Although, we have probably never heard these stereotypes because we can’t put our phones down long enough to learn anything. With the Millennial generation including about  75.4 million people, I think it’s safe to say, not every millennial fits each stereotype. With that said, generations just social constructs. There is no chemical makeup that makes the Millennial generation any different from the others, so why are we thought to be some foreign object that no one understands?

 

1. Millennials are Lazy 

Out of all the Millennial stereotypes, this one irritates me the most. Personally, I don’t know a single millennial that does not have a job, and/or go to school. Granted I am probably biased, but, I feel that it’s harder to be a 20-something-year-old today than it was in the 80’s. The world is a different place today than it was when previous generations grew up. Our mind set and our outlook on life has evolved. Baby boomers believe that getting married and buying a house signifies your entrance into adulthood, and because Millennials are putting off marriage and buying a home until later in life they are labeled lazy. However, when Millennials became of age to work, our economy was hit hard by ‘The Great Recession of 08’ and the youngest generation (Gen Y) was greatly affected. Due to the recession, Millennials are more likely to live in their parents’ home longer because, it was a lot harder to find a job.

2. Millennials are Unmotivated

To say that all Millennials are unmotivated is unfair. Studies found that each generation is motivated but each by different things. Baby Boomers are motivated by money, positions of authority, being valued, appreciated and respected. Generation X is motivated by power, freedom to make their own choices, acknowledgement of achievements, and a job that fulfills them both personally and financially. Moreover, Millennials are motivated by learning, working with others, being involved in meaningful work and having an enjoyable work environment. With that said, I’m not saying there aren’t unmotivated millennials, because there are. However, the Millennials Generation is now the largest in generation in the U.S. workforce therefore, this stereotype seems to be a bit of an exaggeration.

 

3. Millennials are Materialistic

We live in a society where the American dream is to have a nice house, a nice car, designer clothes and bags. America as a whole is a materialistic. However, studies found that more than 3 in 4 millennials would rather spend money on a desirable experience or event rather than something unnecessary such as a piece of clothing. The minimalism lifestyle is increasingly becoming more popular with Millennials. This generation cares more about their lifestyle, not the ‘stuff’ in their life. There is a stereotype about Millennials that contradicts the materialistic one, saying Millennials will be the downfall of our economy. Other generations say Millennials are not spending enough money. So, how can Millennials be materialistic but not spend any money?

 

4. Millennials are Narcissistic

Before I start to explain why this stereotype is absurd, I would like to share some of the narcissistic personality characteristics. Narcissistic behavior traits include, having an excessive need for admiration, having no concern for others’ feelings, unable to handle any criticism, having a sense of entitlement and believe they are special. Sound like anyone you know? Sure it might, but it seems a bit extreme to say that all 74.4 million people in this generation are narcissistic.

 

You know the phrase “but enough about me…?” well, that saying was created in the Baby Boomers Generation. They are known as the original “me” generation, and the 70’s was nicknamed the “me” decade. Today, Millennials have been given the nicknamed the “ME ME ME” generation. The irony in this is, much of the stereotypes aimed towards the Millennials is coming from the Baby Boomers who were once labeled very similarly. Sure, you can look on Instagram and Facebook and see all the selfies being posted, but Millennials are a social generation and they care about self-expression. If these sites were created 60 years ago, do you think the Baby Boomers would be posting their selfies from the music festivals they attended? I sure do.

 

5. Millennials act Entitled

Some believe that the entitled behavior of millennials is caused by “failed parenting strategies”. Growing up, Millennials were told they are special, and they can do and be whatever they want in this world, and therefore, creating a sense of entitlement. However, if this is true, can millennials really be blamed for the way they act? Millennials did not come up with the idea to hand out participation trophies, our parents, coaches, and teachers did, but I am not here to point the finger at anyone. I believe that what other generations are viewing as entitlement, are just the expectations Millennials have. Millennials want to be treated fair and equal. To say that all millennials expect to be handed everything in life without giving any time or effort is unfair.

 

The labeling, stereotyping and judging of the each generation is not something new, it has been happening for many years . The world is always changing are so are the people in it. There will be a new generation to follow the Millennials, and undoubtedly, they will be will be stereotyped. However, please remember before labeling them, you were once included in the misunderstood generation. Everyone is this world has something to offer, just because it may be different from you, does not make them any less of a person.

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12 thoughts on “5 Stereotypes Millennials are Tired of Hearing

  1. I really like this listicle, now that I think of all the times my parents have said “do something with your life”. I dont think they understand that you need a degree now a days to do anything in the business world.

    1. Actually that’s not true because i have listen to people that have jobs about doing content and digital marketing and they make about 40 to 50k. It not much but combine with saving money and investing and that is the perfect weapons for success. Looking at this now I have thought on dropping out but I stay because of my major and a field that I want to work in. I may have some debt at the end of this but, I know investing and saving money so I will be able to cover myself now and the future.

  2. I feel like it’s harder for millennial to get a job while in college now a days. Some jobs view students as workers as over qualified. And I agree that us having a sense of entitlement isn’t necessary a bad thing all the time

  3. I agree, I have heard all of these statements in some form or fashion before. This is an engaging subject.

  4. I also agree with the connection you made with the 70s decade. Even though the times changed the scenarios and life situations are the same

  5. Unfortunately, every generation will have stereotypes associated to them. You are completely right, many of these stereotypes were given to past generations– everything comes with its own territory. Great topic!

    1. I think of this in a way of baby boomers are the work to death in a secure job, gen X for the college degree and work hard and play hard, and millennium of being creative and going have fun

  6. I have heard all of these stereotypes, and I think that these things could be said about any age group. In all age ranges, there are some people who fit this stereotype, and others that are completely opposite. I personally think it is wrong to label one group by only some members actions.

  7. I like how you pointed out the minnemialisism lifestyle, I find myself living this way by not trying to spend a lot of money on things such as new clothes. Just trying to be cheap overall

  8. I agree 100% with your Listicle, not all millennials feel that they are entitled to everything. Although we are a generation that has been offered more, we are a generation that works hard for what we earn.

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