You have unwittingly launched a societal hand-wringing over the future. Generation X, Generation Y, the Baby Boomers — they all feel that you are the harbingers of doom. That your generation will be the cause of our demise. You are selfish. You have a sense of entitlement. You don’t believe in hard work. Well, at least that is what all the “experts” are telling us.
I spend approximately 12 hours a week with millenials and I’ve grown to love you. To respect you and I’m excited about how you will change society.
It is not that you don’t believe in hard work, it is that you believe in balance. You don’t believe that success should come at the sacrifice of everything else in your life.
It is not that you are selfish (well, no more than any other 20 year old) it is that you are used to being in a world with social media where at any moment the spotlight can be focused on you.
You are not entitled, you expect and demand more from society. You demand better work/life balance. You demand equal treatment between the genders. You demand fairness among the races and have little tolerance for digressions.
You also are scared of the future. You are worried that you will have a job. You are worried that you will keep a job. You are worried about the environment. You are worried about your food. You are worried that the political system is broken.
You live at home not because you want Mom & Dad to take care of you but because the cost of school is so high you can’t afford to live outside of the home. You work a part time job and go to school full time. You work over the summers. You take internships and mentorships and volunteer at a surprising rate.
What I love most about you is your belief that you CAN change things. That you will force the world to bend under your will. That things like peace, equality, and tolerance are achievable goals. My generation is filled with skeptics and cynics and non-believers – a whole generation that “gave up” on the system. But YOU – you bright faced millenials are the cock-eyed optimists that we need right now. You are the face of good things to come.
I love you.