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Narcissistic, broke, and 7 other ways to describe the Millennial generation

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posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 03:48 PM
Hopefully this is in the right place. I chose this forum because of how this generation will affect the future in which we will live in and how we can make the future a better place. This is a Yahoo news article which goes over the characteristics of the new generations of adults. Like the baby boomers before them the good, the bad, and the ugly can shape how the millennial generation is seen and will affect the planet.

This new generation of adults — portrayed most recently in HBO's Girls — has proved quite difficult to define, but not for lack of trying Who are the Millennials? Aside from being born in the 1980s and 1990s, they comprise a generation that continues to elude a neat definition. With the popularity of HBO's Girls, whose main character thinks she's the voice of this new generation ("Or at least a voice. Of a generation."), Millennials have come under renewed focus in the media, among the literati, and in the boardrooms of marketers trying to pinpoint what this demographic wants. Here, nine ways that Millennials have been described:

Here is a couple excerpts from the article.

1. They're natural entrepreneurs... Call it "Generation Sell" — Millennials are less inclined to join a commune or a movement, and would rather start a small business, says William Deresiewicz at The New York Times. Brought up in the "heroic age of dot-com entrepreneurship" that defined the 1990s, and distrustful of "large organizations, including government," the Millennial views small business as "the idealized social form of our time."

2. ...But they aren't acting on whatever entrepreneurial instincts they have As a 1984 baby, Mark Zuckerberg sits comfortably in the Millennial generation. But the social network magnate is, in this view, the exception rather than the rule. Older American entrepreneurs are now 30 percent more common than younger ones, says David Yanofsky at Quartz. And this divide is only going to grow wider. According to the Kauffman Foundation report, in 2012, the Millennial generations' business initiatives declined to a six-year low. For every 100,000 young adults, only 230 startups were created. Whereas in the 55 to 64 and the 35 to 44 age groups, 340 business per 100,000 people were created.

5. They're socialists Looks like the "right-wing cries of 'socialist takeover!' may be based in more than paranoia," says Nona Willis Aronowitz at Good. Polls show that 49 percent of Millennials "view socialism in a favorable light," compared with 43 percent who view it unfavorably. Millennials are also the generation of Occupy Wall Street, the anti-corporate movement, and "it's not hard to figure out why our generation isn't so gung-ho about capitalism — it has disappointed and, in some cases, straight-up failed us."

3. They're spendthrifts... Studies show that Millennials, who have been swamped by ad campaigns since they were in the crib, are more likely than their elders to spend big, "especially on new technologies," says Julie Halpert at The Fiscal Times. These studies say Millennials are addicted to instant gratification, and view new gadgets as needs, not wants. Millennials are also "the fastest-growing demographic of those who purchase luxury goods," says Rachel Krause at The Frisky, engaging in the kind of "lavish, indiscriminate consumerism" that will lead to the "death rattle" of their bank accounts.

6. They're narcissistic Millennials "may not be the caring, socially conscious environmentalists some have portrayed them to be," says Joanna Chau at The Chronicle of Higher Education. One study says that Millennials are more narcissistic than their elders, and increasingly value "money, image, and fame more than inherent principles like self-acceptance, affiliation, and community." While college students in 1971 ranked "being very well off financially" as their number-eight concern, for Millennials it's consistently at "the top of the list."

There is much more in the article. What the article does in lays out how the Millennials see themselves. Reading through the article I can say I seen a lot of this in myself and many others in my age group. Which each generation we have the chance of success or failure. When I was reading about the narcissistic nature of the Millennials generation I recalled how different articles were critical of young people who were becoming more and more narcissistic. There is nothing wrong with respecting yourself; however, we should be aware that many people want nothing more than attention. They also don't care what the attention is because popularity has created this illusion that it is the best thing out there. Here is an excerpt from a blog that is relevant to this:

A young woman who had been on MTV's "Teen Mom" show, which I also was unaware of, was desperate to extend her 15 minutes of fame. She'd tried singing, and writing a book, and bikini modeling (why not? What's the difference between being a writer and a bikini model?) Didn't work. So she made a sex tape which then "leaked out" on the Internet. She claims she made it for her own personal use, the fact that her partner is a professional porn star notwithstanding.

There was a survey, gosh, it must have been more than a decade ago now, in which teens were asked what their goal in life was. The majority said they wanted to be "famous." Not a famous singer, or a famous lawyer, or a famous artist or even a famous accountant. They didn't say they wanted to be so good at something that it made them famous. They just wanted fame.

And that's why we have today's news about some 21-year-old woman "leaking" a sex tape online so that people will keep talking about her. She didn't even sell the recording, so there would at least have been a monetary reward. All that mattered was to keep people talking about her.

I understand this might be too much. But look at it from my perspective. Kids, teens, young adults, etc. Are all influenced by the media and their peers. There is usually two sides to one coin. But I feel this generation is quickly burning out before having a chance to lead future generations. What we need to do is really reach out and set an example that the future is can be better than what we have now. Yes, I'm a very optimistic person. But I would hate to see the future leaders as empty shells who just want popularity. I would like feedback for the thread and see your opinion about the Millennial generation.
Source 2

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 04:31 PM
reply to post by Phoenix267

First, I am curious why the first two points are contradictory. In one, the discussion is on how they are entrepreneurial. In the next, we are hearing about how steep their decline of entrepreneurialism is. o.O

But that aside....much of what is written is true. And damning of the lazy parenting that took hold in the late 70's. My younger sister behaves in this way. She is 12 years younger than me, and almost intolerable for me to be around.

Its obvious that we have lost something in our family units. I don't have any answers, either. Just observations.

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 04:44 PM
reply to post by bigfatfurrytexan

How I view that is that many do like the success of Facebook or they love to purchase over priced products from Apple. But this generation is not favorable with capitalism. Because banks and corporations have a left a bad taste in their mouths. The man who could successfully start a small business is nothing compared to people starting websites like YouTube or Facebook. Even Mark Zuckerberg is featured on capitalist themed websites and magazines like Bloomberg and Forbes.

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 04:49 PM
I have a brother who is in the age group and fits this description very well.

The entrepreneurial spirit thing is there, but as descibed, doesn't ever happen. He cannot work under someone else because he sees himself as a creative individualistic entrepreneur..... but in reality that just means he can't hold down a job. He has never attempted to start his own business.

It's just like, he is a legend in his own head, and can talk about his incredible genius for hours, but has never done anything.

Being a hardworking cynical X gen, I have no patience with him at all.

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 04:55 PM
The baby boomer generation, that have given us the current crop of politicians that sit in Washington take the cake as the most narcisstic, war monger, profit-above anything else bunch.

Please wait until we reach the age where we take control of the world, and then you can cast your judgement upon us

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 04:55 PM
reply to post by Bluesma

Yes, I agree. Even I'm guilty too. It's funny how the we can see the weaknesses of this generation before they really had a chance to put their foot in the door. Crazy!

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 04:57 PM
reply to post by muse7

Yes, but before we take lead we need to make the future a better place. If this is what we got for future leaders than I feel we have a burn out in the start.

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 05:08 PM
reply to post by Phoenix267

Their birth dates also define them as people who don't remember the Cold War.
They haven't known socialism as the hallmark of the nation's major enemy, which may explain why their minds accept "socialist" ideas more willingly.

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 05:09 PM
reply to post by DISRAELI

Socialism is not evil as there are many different forms of socialism. Yes, I know where you're coming from. But I do think it is good to have programs to help the poor and workers. Do you know what I'm saying?

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 05:19 PM
reply to post by Phoenix267

Although I'm not a socialist myself, my comment wasn't really a criticism.
It was more an attempt to work out a bit of cause-and-effect. Not growing up in a Cold War atmosphere is bound to make some kind of difference, and that could be one of them.

Ironically, another possible effect might be the tendancy shown on ATS to see "World War Three" round every corner.
To anyone who lived through the Cold War proper, the political atmosphere today between the major powers is incredibly calm and peaceful in comparison. But they don't have anything to compare it with.

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 05:26 PM
reply to post by DISRAELI

That's true! This reminds me on an article from the Mises Institute. A Culture of Fear The propaganda of the Cold War will not work any more because of the collapse of the Soviet Union. So, communism and socialism is seen differently from the youth. Which is why many older Tea Party members are out of touch with the youth.

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 05:30 PM

Originally posted by Phoenix267
reply to post by bigfatfurrytexan

How I view that is that many do like the success of Facebook or they love to purchase over priced products from Apple. But this generation is not favorable with capitalism. Because banks and corporations have a left a bad taste in their mouths. The man who could successfully start a small business is nothing compared to people starting websites like YouTube or Facebook. Even Mark Zuckerberg is featured on capitalist themed websites and magazines like Bloomberg and Forbes.

Facebook has given people an audience. And, as we have seen, very few have anything worthwhile to say. Poor grammar and diction is on display for the whole world to see. And it is depressing to see it.

Then again, our children SHOULD disappoint us. Otherwise, we would have no use to them. Our jobs are to observe and correct behaviors. I am just curious if that is happening.

The whole "they have to have an IPad" thing....that is just part of the consumer culture we have allowed corporations to build around us. These kids....they aren't sophisticated enough to see that yet. They don't see how the whole "Apple Store" concept is going to ruin the power user experience of computing. They don't see how the corporation they hate is the same one that provides those baubles that they have been groomed to need..

Maybe they will, maybe not. Are they all that different than us as kids? Atari's/Nintendo's.....Nike's.....there was stuff to suck our money out of our pockets, too.

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 05:45 PM
reply to post by bigfatfurrytexan

Reading your comment reminded me of an article that was critical of Apple and the consumer craze that many are into currently. Article How the products are not that great and everything in-between. We have allowed consumerism to take hold of our lives. Which influence how we see the world and what we want the world to be like.

Anna Lapp'e tells it how it is perfectly in the picture.
The presidential election had less voters than the 2008 election. But I bet more and more people were more interested in the "sales" on black Friday. Scary to think many care about shopping and products than who is going to be president.

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 06:04 PM
I am millennial, born in mid/late 80s.
What can I tell. To be honest I see it as quite a good characteristic about out generation on average.

1) Enterpreneurship is true
I don´t much people who do not want to make a startup, myself included. One of the reasons might be also the amount of promotion entrepreneurship gets here. There are so many different events promoting it : government programs, different trainings, large events. From young age on, entrepreneurship gets lots of attention. There is even a local TV-show, where hundreds of youth apply to introduce their idea to the investors and best ones are picked out, winner gets an investment.

I have planned my startup for long time, made choices for it, worked couple of years on it already, although haven´t launched yet. We are working and doing our best
Later this year or beginning of next year is current launch prediction

I never see myself working in some company in a middle position for years. Even higher position wouldn´t matter. I have worked in several jobs, although often I simply can´t stand the 9-5 job, routine and obeying to the higher members. Even currently my knowledge is often stronger than theirs in some fields, although I can not stand when I am not listened to and can´t do things my way. . I need freedom + interest in the job+ having the ability to think on my own. So far I have not found such job

I see starting business as the only way to work on something I really like and which would not create stress as another job would

Small-business is ideal and I do not like corporations

2) Thinking, not Doing. On average I agree, although it depends on the culture. There are many young people who start here, although also many who do not. There are some amazing success stories and these inspire a lot of people. Since the late 2000s, there are maybe 20-30 success stories who have made it global. The country has one of the highest number of startups per capita in the world and the overall success rate is among the highest per capita. Yet too many people fail to start their own their business and only talk, talk and talk about it.

3)Spending. Well, I personally spend a lot on technology. Computer and phone have to up to date. Although I do not change whenever new one comes out, only when the old one is too slow/weak to run newer apps. It is about needs not wants
Many change their technology whenever new model comes out.

Luxury items not really... I usually buy quality, not luxury stuff. I prefer somewhere in the middle. Not designer although still quality. Although it is uncommon to see others from uni buying designer clothes and expensive watches, cars. Up-to-date tech is also really uncommon. Financial intelligence on average is extremely weak, while expectations are high. That is not good in my opinion.

4) Broke. Yes, although not many loans as the higher education is free for most people. Although financially not most are in a bad position. It is not easy to find a job after college and the first salaries are too low. I managed to make some good investments when I was younger so I personally consider myself quite secure right now. I do not need to work currently, although working part-time at a place just to get better understanding of my area of expertise and get first-hand expience in the corporate culture . I see it as a useful experience before launching my startup.

5)Socialism. Not socialism, but left-wing. Most people I know, including myself are left-wing. Corporatism is not seen well. There are many conspiracists among youth too. This country used to be under socialistic regime, although

6) Narcissism. Depends, 60%/40% I would say, although financial status is a goal for most. Image is also quite high on the lists, although fame not so much, at least round here. I personally see money as a goal in a way, although I do not care if I would make millions or not, simply secure financially. I would prefer good salary in something I love to extreme salary in something I hate.

I can not get the Facebook addicts. What´s the point of searching so much external validation? Wasting hundres/thousands of hour on chit-chat, watching funny videos/pics and like´ing things...

7)Politically engaged. Probably. Most people have a political opinion in my age-group. Although this does not mean their opinion is based on knowledge. Nearly everybody votes.

8)Religion. I have never met a young person who is religious. Although the thing is this country is the most atheistic country in the world, so that might also be the key. I am an atheist.

9)Stressed out. Agree. High ambition and impatience create lots of stress, at least for me. I do not do yoga or meditate (planning both tbh). I do sports to relax, although many play videogames, so this point overally explains it well.

reply to post by Bluesma

Your description of your brother reminds me of my parents describing me some years ago, nearly word-to-word. Hard-working, patient X-generation is a good description of them. Although I was very different by nature from them, so we had lots of arguments about it - they had no patience with me either

edit on 21-4-2013 by Cabin because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 06:11 PM
Why should I fully engage myself into a system I can't fully respect?

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 06:20 PM
reply to post by DISRAELI

Fascism and American Imperialism are far more dangerous to the American psyche than socialism.

This state of constant war is proof.

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 06:20 PM
reply to post by yourmaker

Because you change the world the better. I do not respect or like how the world is being played out. But I feel I can make a differences.

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 06:25 PM
reply to post by VaterOrlaag

As I explained in my second post, the first comment was not really a criticism, more a theory about cause-and-effect. Wearing my "student of history" hat.
Whether it is a good thing or a bad thing, "children not growing up in a Cold War less likely to have a problem with socialism" seems historically plausible.

edit on 21-4-2013 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 06:48 PM

Originally posted by yourmaker
Why should I fully engage myself into a system I can't fully respect?

That is an attitude that will have you sitting on the sidelines being pissed off your entire life.

The system that you don't one does. But it is what it is. Use it to your advantage. Or not. Poo pooing about it is likely far easier, but much less rewarding.

posted on Apr, 21 2013 @ 07:56 PM
Hmmm... Let's see what I'd say about that.

1. They're natural entrepreneurs...
Every generation has some. This is nothing new or special. Big whoop de doo.

2. ...But they aren't acting on whatever entrepreneurial instincts
A mostly captured and over-regulated marketplace makes that a lot more difficult than you would think. Some places you can't even open a freakin' lemonaide stand without a permit. And how do you start-up if you can't get any money for a business permit?

5. They're socialists
Something the previous generation themselves created. The whole nanny-state nonsense starts in grade school. Students aren't allowed to fend for themselves with idiocy like zero-tolerance and other over-protective policies. What the heck did people expect to happen?
Then with the job market being rigged against them, that doesn't help either. Not everyone is looking to get a free ride, but if you can't get a hand-up with the lowest rungs of the ladder missing - may as well get a hand out.

3. They're spendthrifts...
That only lasts as long as they have money, or access to somebody else's money. After that, some things are still worth saving up for, but such purchases don't happen often.

6. They're narcissistic
Can't entirely blame 'em. Watch the news long enough or see other people for what they are. If there's nothing else worth believing in, at least believe in yourself. B.S. filter going off too much and issues of not really trusting others adds to this. Then you have things like people with too much money that in all honestly don't deserve it, so people figure they may as well get theirs while they're at it.

Really though, much of this is the result of being cast out of the mold that has been made for them. It's what happens when you try to build a society with the majority of planning done using short-term thinking.

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