- Category: Volume 86 (Fall 2014 - Spring 2015)
- Published: 29 October 2014
Generation Y: the "Millennials", "Generation Me", and the "Instant Gratification Generation." Yup, that's us. In a world with social media obsessions, high speed technological development, and much of what we desire readily available right at our fingertips, I hate to break it to you but we sort of live up to it.
I get it, naturally, times change. With the times, so do people, habits and values. And I mean call me old fashioned, but I think we in Generation Me could take some serious lessons from the humbler, more patient and conservative generations that came before us.
Whether it is in relationships, work ethic or attitude, here are five old fashioned values I think we should try to keep alive today and maybe the world will be a little bit better off for it.
1. You can't always get what you want.
Spoiler alert; things in life are not always going to go exactly the way you imaged or according to your perfectly thought out and formulated plans. And that is okay. Often today, it seems our generation is a bit spoiled. We are used to getting necessities quickly, easily, and exactly how we want them thanks to technology, fast food chains, and other advances in convenience.
What I think we tend to forget is that lessons are not learned in getting what we want, but rather when we don't. When we do not get what we want we learn to adapt, grow and see another perspective. We may know what we want, but not what we need and sometimes life gives us just that.
2. The grass isn't always greener on the other side.
I know that is easy to believe when we spend hours each day scrolling through news feeds filled with what is essentially the highlight reel of our peers and celebrities.
It is important not to fall in to that trap, for the sake of our self esteem and appreciation for our own lives and what we do have in them. In the Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest world, everyone is always posting the best version of themselves and their life. Don't compare your life to someone else's highlight reel. It is just unrealistic.
3. It's not all about you.
We aren't dubbed "Generation Me" for no reason; many accuse our generation of being much more self centered and narcissistic than others prior. From being encouraged to plaster pictures of ourselves and updates as to what we are doing or accomplishing every second of our lives all over social media to growing up in a society where the media is extremely focused on physical appearance and looks, we have been primed for this.
I think we could all benefit from thinking more about others and helping so that our human relationships do not have to suffer. Helping others brings such a stronger sense of happiness and purpose in life; being completely focused on us is not doing anything for the world, nor is it bettering our own lives for that matter.
4. When something breaks, you fix it.
We live in a world where everything is disposable or replaceable. Even relationships and marriages seem to fall victim to this mind set. Again, our generation is used to quickness, ease and no effort, but I think that is truly damaging to our work ethic and interpersonal relationships in particular.
It is no coincidence that unemployment and divorce are on the rise; people are forgetting how to fight for what they want or overcome obstacles. An elderly couple that was asked by a reporter how they remained married for 65 years said it best; "We were born in a time when if something was broken we would fix it, not throw it away."
5. Appreciate the simple things.
Take the time to stop and smell the roses. Put the phone that is glued to your hand down, go outside and appreciate nature and life's simple beauty.
Also take the time to remember and soak in the simple parts of life such as laughs with family members, a delicious dinner, or a picturesque sunset. As cliché as it sounds, when we can finally pull ourselves away from our phones, TV's and computer screens, we will appreciate our lives as a whole a bit more.