As a twenty-one year old college student, I have experienced the pressure of trying to maintain a decent grade point average, working part-time, and making sure I pay my bills on time. So far, I think I have done a pretty good job; however, I hear people talking about today’s young adults and how they are lazy and how they do not act like adults. I have heard comments ranging from the ideas that many of us do not know how to file our own taxes to the fact that many of us can not boil an egg. I have had countless debates with people about this topic because I question how every twenty-something adult is apparently “lazy” or “immature.” That just seemed so far-fetched to me.
What I found was that people, mostly the older generations, felt like millennials were not progressing through their lives fast enough. Often times, I will hear the classic story of how the person I am talking to had a job at the age of ten, paid for their own car right out of the gate, etc. So, to an extent, I can understand their perspective; however, this is a different generation. Times are different. Many of us were raised differently than our parents were. We were taught differently. My biggest points in my arguments is that education focuses on core subjects, which is fine, but many schools do not require their students to take family and consumer science classes or money management classes. We are sent into the “real world” at a disadvantage. We are unprepared for the world, and many times, we fight to find out what to do for ourselves.
This is not a rant about how offended I am by what the older generation thinks of us twenty-somethings, but rather, I would like to encourage the members of my generation to hang in there. We all learn things at different paces. Sure, it might take you more time to learn a certain skill or acquire new and important knowledge, but every step is step towards victory.
I am constantly in a state of panic at the idea that I am not “adult” enough, but I am trying to teach myself to celebrate the small tasks that I do every day. When I fill out clearances and work papers, I celebrate because I know that was something I could not do before. I was excited to learn how to care for my car on my own. I had to make a few mistakes to learn, but now I know how to properly maintain my car without any assistance for the things in my control. I am learning to live on my own, and I am discovering my independence.
We are a generation of learners. It takes time to learn how to be a full-fledged working adult. We take baby steps to get from point A to point B, and that is completely acceptable. There is nothing wrong with taking things one step at a time into adulthood.