Being a millennial means you’re currently between the ages of 18 and 34. You also have a ton of debt, which is leading to stress. You’re the gayest generation, you send your love over email instead of voicemail, and, according to a new poll by the Pew Research Center, you probably hate yourself, too.
Millennials have surpassed baby boomers as the largest generation in the world, and that title comes with a little more stress and self-loathing. According to Pew, 59 percent of millennials think they are self-absorbed. Though that may be true in this age of social media narcissism, just how self-absorbed are millennials? Research has shown that some 53 percent of young Americans aged 18 to 29 are using the photo-sharing site Instagram more than any other generation. A 2014 study asked users to complete a Narcissistic Personality Inventory and found that narcissism was the primary driver of social media updates.
Nearly half of the millennials polled also described themselves as wasteful, while 43 percent said they're greedy, and 31 percent said their generation is cynical. Conversely, however, 24 percent of millennials said millennials are responsible, 36 percent said they're hard-working, and only 17 percent thought their generation is moral. Being a millennial is obviously tough, so it’s no surprise that 40 percent of millennials actually don’t categorize themselves as a millennial. Instead, some 33 percent of millennials falsely categorize themselves as "Generation X," which is actually adults 35 to 50.
So, why do millennials have so much self-loathing? One of the reasons is because millennials are struggling in the real world. They find themselves in debt immediately out of school, but that education they paid so much for hasn’t really paid off in the job world, leading to what has been dubbed, “The Quarter-Life Crisis.” It could also have to do with the fact millennials are three times more likely to be obese when compared to other age groups. This is because of increased screen time, lack of regular, leisure-time physical activity, and a longer time spent in education and transitioning to adulthood.
However, if you believe that not identifying yourself as a member of your supposed "generation" means you hate yourself, then millennials actually love themselves more than a certain generation. Just 18 percent of the “Silent Generation,” people born between 1928 and 1945, identify themselves as being a part of that generation, with only two (2!) percent of those “Silent” people stating that the name of their generation is a good fit.