Many people blame millennials for almost everything, and others accuse younger millennials and older Gen-Zs of being lazy.
Not only are these beliefs unfounded, but they are also widely off the mark.
With the troubles and struggles that come with each day, everyone experiences different stress levels at some point in their lives—hell, every generation!
But millennials seem to have taken exhaustion to another level. They may as well be called Gen-Burnout.
Millennials are in constant worry over anything and everything. As a result, they are a hot topic for many researchers and social experts. Understanding why Millennials are constantly exhausted is key in offering solutions or measures that can be taken to help them.
But before we go into the why, let us accurately describe who millennials are.
Millennials or Gen-Y are people born between the 1980s and early 2000s. If you are a part of or know anyone in this category, you can easily understand how stressful days can be—always drained, even after a night's sleep.
This brings us to the why? According to researchers, the top factors causing millennials this much stress are associated with income; Money, debt, and financial concerns are the number one source of stress. Millennials are generally well-educated with high self-esteem. Therefore they are aware of what they deserve and know how to get it. So, if they feel unappreciated or underpaid at work, trust that they would complain and if they have to, leave their jobs for a higher paying job. Feeling unappreciated at work and the process of demanding change can be stressful mentally. Looking at debt, millennials are one of the first generations to be introduced to student loans. Student loans can be quite enormous, and it's worse when your job doesn't pay you enough to cover repayments. Millennials can cope with money problems by; switching jobs and living within their means.
Other include the following;
Technology and social media;
Although technology and social media have very positive impacts on the world, over-obsession can result in physical and mental exhaustion. More millennials are sleeping with their smartphones in bed. While this may not cause much harm if they are turned off, the constant phone calls and e-mail notifications interrupt sleep. Physiologically, blue light/spectrum emitted from our phones keeps us alert as our bodies are programmed to remain awake. Millennials should stay off their phones for at least 20-60 minutes before bedtime. This would provide enough time to prepare the brain and body for sleep slowly.
Many millennials are taught that they need to work hard to get ahead in life at a young age. While this statement isn't wrong, it is often misunderstood. After long hours of work, millennials do not rest enough. And I mean, make a conscious effort to sit or lay down without doing anything.
I understand how important financial freedom is, and working hard would give you that. But, I also know that if you constantly check e-mails or take up work calls at night, you'd find yourself taking on unfinished work projects instead of sleeping.
Every young adult experiences a lot of pressure to succeed. Whether this pressure is self-inflicted or from family, the reality is that it does exist and does more harm than good. I mean, who passed the law that one must own cars and houses at the age of 25 or a certain age? The definition of success is different for everyone and goes beyond financial freedom. The truth is, defining what success is for you and set your priorities right can keep stress at bay. If owning a home isn't feasible in the next 5 years, it is unnecessary to kill yourself over it. It is better to prioritize objectives that are realistic over chasing an elusive concept. Learn to celebrate small victories and big milestones.
Mental and emotional stress;
Millennials are plagued daily by many mental health conditions, including depression and anxiety. With a 47% increase yearly, depression is on the rise among millennials. Although millennials are big on mental health and social awareness, many people from that generation still suffer from depression. Considering that millennials love their technology and social media and are thus, greatly influenced by its trends. We have all seen a rise in cyberbullying and body dysmorphic disorder. Young people are beating themselves up over unrealistic standards of beauty. This has led to the global rise of unhealthy practices such as unhealthy diets, pills, and shakes. Not mentioning eating disorders and plastic surgery addiction.
Poor coping mechanisms;
Stress results in even more stress. To alleviate the stress, millennials have sadly turned to poor coping behaviors such as; poor diet, addiction—sex, drug, and overconsumption of alcohol. All these coping mechanisms result in a lack of sleep which further results in more stress. A vicious cycle! Speaking of diet, A typical millennial in the U.S. consumes foods high in refined carbohydrates and low in fiber—a bagel for breakfast, a sandwich for lunch, and pizza or pasta for dinner. This type of diet has little or no vitamins and minerals. This can lead to deficiencies and illnesses. Consuming fruits and vegetables rich in fiber boosts the immune system and prevents fatigue.
Although stress is a normal part of life, if you notice that you are more upset than normal, seek help. Prolonged exhaustion can affect your mind and body, thereby leading to sleep deprivation, anxiety, and depression. Take out time to rest intentionally. Go on vacations and take on hobbies.
Reach out to friends, relatives, or professionals if you have to.