My name is Grace Miller, and I am a Millennial. Honestly, I didn't even know what "Millennial" was until a month ago. I learned about the title from a video I saw when scrolling through Facebook (in typical Millennial fashion). The video was an original song where this man describes the delusional lifestyles Millennials lead.
Watch the video below:
He is harsh, but like he said--criticism isn't easy for our ears. He references such phenomena as hanging out at coffee shops and how Millennials think this will land us a job in the real-world.
The hipster outfits and luscious photos posted on Instagram seem to have taken over our minds, bodies and souls, and frankly, I would like to put an end to that. I'm not saying don’t have your fun and don't wear that cute flannel that always makes you feel so fashion-forward, but c'mon guys, let's get it together. We have so much potential and it will be a waste if we don't utilize it. We grew up with technology, and therefore, are the masters at using it. Let's use our powers for good, and not waste it on purposeless days spent surfing Tumblr and checking iFunny to be clued in on the latest memes. Oh, and don't forget about gaining knowledge about essential oils… (I think I missed out on that one, whoops).
We will be "passed the torch soon" and that reference is coming up more and more in my life when talking with older generations; it's a real concern, folks. So, what do we do about it? And I include myself as "we" because I know I need to change as well. It's a lot easier for people removed from situations to see clearly the dysfunction that exists within a closed community--and because of my age, I, too, am subject to this Millennial syndrome, dangit.
You know, when he talks about inspirational quotes lying under Instagram pictures, that really made me think--what if we actually believed what we posted so “wholeheartedly” online? (What a complicated concept, right?)
For example, I'm scrolling through Pinterest and see this quote (this is based on a true story, too. I promise). The quote reads in simple gray lettering:
Now, after the three seconds it takes to read the quote, the two seconds it takes to instantly feel enough butterflies inside to make you click the "save it" button, and the time it takes for you to return to normal, every day, Millennial life, you have only spent about 7 seconds of your whole existence thinking about as deep as an electronic screen...
Huh. Not very fulfilling now, is it.
But--what if. What if I reflected on what was said? Those words are strong and powerful in themselves, but pair them up with implementation and we have found a meaning to flip purposeless Millennial life on its head.
Not letting “pain make me hate” makes me think of forgiveness. It means even though people at my retail job throw clothes on the floor and expect me to pick up after them like I'm their mother, I think about what their home life is like; they could be facing something I've never even begun to fathom. It means that I should be loving and call my mom more often, and help that lady cross the street who looks like she is having a hard time walking. Life is hard for many who never get a chance to voice it, and I think by being self-focused and spoiled we forget that obvious fact all too often. I’ve decided to change; change my perspective, change my comfort levels, and change my life.
I made myself an anthem, a kind of motto that I'd like to adhere to for a while--and it's simple: let's help people.
Let's help people by utilizing our strengths in technology for a bigger service, not waste it on meaningless apps. Let's start local and serve those around us, not trying to jump beyond our smaller circle so quickly just because it means more fame and recognition. Also, I'm sorry to break this to you, but no one cares about you enough to really want to read your seven-posts-a-day on Facebook. How about we literally venture outside and stop hiding behind our social media accounts, and find a project in our community that will help those who need it most.
I want to go beyond just being forgiving and loving; I want to do good--I want to affect someone's life for the better. Just one person would be enough for me.
Regarding our Millennial childhoods of being given awards just for participating, a lot of life does not function that way; sometimes you either have to generate success or get out. So, what I'm saying is, this is no longer an option for us, Millennials; it is our duty to change. We must. We have to. The time is now, and I don't want another YouTube video to be published that shows someone scared because the next president will be one of us. I want people to be proud they have us around. I want to impact the community in such a positive way that everyone remarks "Wow, I really thought they would amount to nothing, and look how they've proven us wrong". Let's go, Millennials; it’s time to wake up.