Entitled, immoral, narcissistic and lazy, those are but a few of the words used to describe our generation. It’s hard to go more than a month without reading an article somewhere complaining about how terrible we are.
Hopefully you’re not buying into these terrible stereotypes though, because in truth, we are slaying it (and no, not in the fashion way). In fact, we might be the best generation yet.
Not since the '60s has a generation been so aware of social issues. Unlike the non-committal Gen Xers we aren't afraid to speak out and engage in critical debates about racism, classicist, homophobia, sexism and so on.
We challenge institutions, people and social structures on social issues such as corruption, violence, discrimination, equality and justice.
Having been criticised for being a generation that is active online but highly inactive offline, the youth is now using social media platforms to educate themselves and the world about critical social, political and economic issues.
And we engage through movements in a meaningful way that drives social change and impact.
A perfect local example would be the #FeesMustFall movement we witnessed not so long ago.
The millennial generation is more ethnically and racially diverse than the other generations, we are less religious and traditional and more open to change.
We think independently despite the system we’re operating within and we are constantly questioning the messages society puts out through media.
We have changed the status quo to status "GO"
Remember those childhood movies where nerds and geeks were always being portrayed as losers? Now who is ruling this technologically advanced world?
We have become a tech-savvy generation of Harry Potter nerds and software engineers and being intelligent and geeky has become cool.
We’re more informed than you think
We may be addicted to our phones but it is because we want to stay up to date with this rapidly changing world. Studies show that 86% of millennials get news from social media with 88% through Facebook.
We have so much information at our disposal that we know there’s no excuse for not educating ourselves about the world.
We’re creative AF
Social media is less about the need to be social than it is about self-expression (please don’t mistake this for narcissism).
The internet allows us to express ourselves in whatever way we like, whether it’s by blogging, phone photography, or sharing art to a wider platform.
We are also changing the way business is done by using social media as a platform to generate income. Millions of young people have already made a career out of the internet. Now tell me that isn’t creativity.
Experience means a lot to us
I think it’s safe to say we value experiences over things. We’re not used to owning anything really besides our phones (we live on those) because we do not have money to buy stuff since we’re faced with so many financial straits such as student loan, debts and unemployment.
So, instead we assign greater importance to personal experiences — and showing off on social media. (Inserts blushing face)
We know it’s up to us to make a difference
We are very much aware of the problems we are facing in our country and the majority of us don't plan to sit back and hope that someone else will get out there and make a difference.
This manifests itself in ways like volunteering, having conversations and raising awareness about important issues as well as using our skills to make a difference and choosing jobs that focus on the "greater good" rather than the biggest paycheck.