**Time for A Break in Regularly Scheduled Programming**
Seriously, I need you guys to go vote for this. PLEASE. I realize this is ironic right before a post about managing expectations, but I was super bummed I didn’t make it as a finalist in any of the traditional categories they are honoring at the Plutus Awards on Thursday. Then I realized I had the chance to win the “Peoples Choice Award” , but I need your help. Please click on the photo of me below and go vote for me. Just enter your name, email (It won’t be sold or used to send you spam!) and my URL to vote for this blog.
You have until Midnight tonight (Wednesday, 10/16) Do this….If I win, I’ll send everyone who voted some candy or something.
**Back to regularly scheduled programming**
If you’re a millennial, you’ve probably seen this article floating around the internet, titled “Why Generation Y Yuppies Are Unhappy.” I’m not here to knock it, I think it is a great article that clearly articulates for both millennials and their harsh critics a) why we’re having such a hard time and b) why it isn’t entirely our fault.
You see, before I moved to New York, my life was exactly like what the article described: Boomer-generation parents who did unexpectedly well for themselves, and told me I could be anything I wanted. It was my grandmother’s biggest nightmare that I had the brains and the means to attend law or medical school, and instead I wanted to be something as frivolous as-GASP-being a stage actress. Instead I wanted to pursue my true passion, until I found it that compared to most people, I really wasn’t that good at what I thought I was “passionate” about. So, echoing my thoughts from my article over at “Ask the Young Professional,” I’d thought I’d share a few tips about how to manage expectations of your own.
Accept that you can’t really manage your expectations–Ha ha! I tricked you. Why should you manage your expectations when you’ve been told your entire life that possibilities are not only bountiful, but endless, and that YOU, yes! you! are going to be able to grab onto whatever you want to take a hold of. Yes, millenials are unhappy because their expectations aren’t being met, but wasn’t it Eleanor Roosevelt who once said, “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams?” She was born before the depression.
Everyone knows that if you swing big you’ll miss big, but you’ll also have a better chance of accomplishing something worthwhile than if you just played it safe and took the walk to first base.
Accept the pain–There is way too much millennial bashing going on for my tastes, and maybe we’ve earned a lot of the criticism. But life is hard for us too, (and I’m not just saying that because I am one!) It has been proven that our generation will delay purchasing a home, some may not even have kids at all, and many will never work their way out of student debt because of the horrible, horrible, horrible economy we’ve had handed to us. Was this our fault? No, none of us are even old enough to run for President, so thanks America. My best advice to other millennials is to accept the pain. For those of you who aren’t millennials, stop and give one a hug. Being broke, unemployed, and heartbroken over your dreams is never any fun.
Accept that you don’t know everything–Actually, scratch that, you know nothing. This is something I learned very quickly once I left the safe confines of the family nest.
Be thankful–Not for that fact that you’re young, out of school, and living in the worst economy since your Grandma was born. Many often complain of the arrogance and horrible work ethic of many millennials. True, the type of “I’m just here till my big break comes along enthusiasm is grating and annoying, but it is also the best tool your “you can do anything” parents could have given you. Learning the taste of failure and how to wash it out of your mouth and move on with life is the single most important lesson anyone can learn.
Accept that being happy is the highest calling of all–Because we grew up being told that we were so great and destined for great things, I think a lot of us feel ashamed to feel content with the things we have, especially if you instagram and see all the bright and shiny of someone else’s life.
I sat for many months in NYC, knowing I didn’t want to stay and pursue acting, but being afraid to come home because I was afraid of how it would look to everyone that I’d quit and left. I felt ashamed to say, “this doesn’t make me happy.” If I wasn’t going to be a huge star, what did that mean for my life? How was I going to contribute and leave something behind?
I’m sure leaving a legacy is nice. It’s nice to be remembered, isn’t it? But people our age put too little a premium into simply being happy. I know sometimes it seems as if I’ll never be satisfied, that there is always something to do or some way to make something–my house, my blog, my relationships–better. Then I look around and find that I am happy, and that’s really all that matters.