An odd question, I know. It seems like many Millennials are either still searching for themselves personally and professionally or just hitting their stride in both. But I feel like the question must be asked. As a recent member of the 30’s club, I’m a Millennial that’s already thinking about what the next phase of my life is going to look like.
What Have We Done and What’s Next for Millennials?
What I can say is that I’m well on my way in my writing career and have a clear vision of who I am. Those aren’t questions that still plague me. But as I look down at the next generation and consider what I have to offer, I know I will treat them much differently than our generation has been treated by our predecessors.
That’s a bit of a generalization, but not much. I think it’s more than fair to say that older generations have ridiculed Millennials and unfairly labeled too many of us as lazy, self-entitled, overly ambitious, do-gooders who don’t know what it means to work for our success. Sound familiar? I’m sure it does, and if it doesn’t, a quick google search should bring up some of those criticisms.
And it sucks because the generations before us have so much to offer. So much information they could be sharing rather than alienating us for wanting to do things our way. A new way, and in most cases, a better way that will help pave the way for Gen Z to step in and make even more improvements to what we are doing now.
Let’s be specific here. I can say our generation has largely helped unite the world socially through our use of social media. We’ve utilized technology to make improvements to travel, banking, workplace and work/life balance, overall customer service, and though more slowly, the health and medical industry. And by the time we’re done, you can bet we would have made even more strides to enhancing these areas.
But why have we felt such pushback? Why haven’t Boomers been more welcoming of our visions and perspectives? Of course, some of us Millennials can be described in the manner I’ve expressed above, but I can confidently say that most of my peers who I engage are similar to me in ambition, drive, and putting in the work necessary to see things through.
Leading the Next Generation
I believe, just as strongly, that we will help the next generation as they find ways to make their mark on our world. We will be there to embrace their visions, encourage their changes, and enlighten them on obstacles they may not yet see.
That is our job, or will be our job once we’re collectively closer to firmly planting our feet. And watch how far the next generation carries the baton. I get excited just thinking about the possibilities of a united group of individuals separated only by our birth date, but joined more strongly by our goal to genuinely make the world a better place.
Endless is the word that comes to mind, and I’m sure many Millennials still feel like our ability to change the world can fit snugly in that description. We will continue to push, and while we’re pushing, we’ll have one hand behind us pulling up the next generation of “do-gooders” ready to take their place in history.
Kern Carter is a writer and author of the novella Thoughts of a Fractured Soul. His goal is to use his gift for words to touch the world and ignite conversations around topics that matter most to him. Connect with him on Twitter or read more on kerncarter.com.