Amidst abandoning my prospective topic that consisted of a vague mix of ideas that would have lacked a central thesis and data support, I stumbled upon a rather intriguing article from the Huffington Post that has given me some new ideas.
Supplied to the Huffington Post Blog by waitbutwhy.com, with no identifiable author, the article explores why those born from the late 70s to the mid-90s are so unsatisfied with their various accomplishments, or lack thereof. We are the children of the Baby Boomer generation. They were the children of the G.I. generation, who “were obsessed with economic security and raised their kids to build practical, secure careers.” The trickle down from this results in a generation of blind-sided romantics.
“With a smoother, more positive life experience than that of their own parents, Lucy’s parents raised Lucy with a sense of optimism and unbounded possibility. And they weren’t alone. Baby Boomers all around the country and world told their Gen Y kids that they could be whatever they wanted to be, instilling the special protagonist identity deep within their psyches.”
Surely, the “I come with my own background music” t-shirts don’t help the fact that our generation believe ourselves to be the object within a very dramatic story. With successes and failures, we were taught that things would work out, because we have something special to contribute to society.
How did we get like this? Beyond our parents’ inspiration, the current atmosphere in which we spend our days encourages “competitive, delusional, and taunting expectations” for us twenty-somethings.
I was drawn mostly to the small portion of the article that focuses on social networks, and how they are a culprit for creating this narrative manner in which we live our lives. Documenting our accomplishments, or daily activities, make us feel (or continue to feel) special in our own right. People with 1,000+ friends on Facebook might gain a sense of pride if their relationship status changes for all to see.
The personal struggles of Generation Y, no thanks to the digital world in which we represent ourselves, are the result of the daily reminders of what we haven’t done yet. Through all of the expectations that already come from being a college student, the presence of the competition has never been more alarming.
This is what I would like to pursue for my multi-modal project, particularly exploring the effects of social networking on Generation Y and the digital environment that encases us. The generational gap between those before us and whatever is to come in the future will also be explored throughout my project. As a member of this generation, I find myself longing to dig my way out of such reliance on the digital world, and through this project, I hopefully will discover some ways to tackle the overwhelming feeling of expectation.
For some more insight in what I’d like to pursue, here’s another clever waitbutwhy original: 7 Ways to be Insufferable on Facebook.
“Why Generation Y Yuppies are Unhappy.” wait but why. waitbutwhy.com, 15 9 2013. Web. 25 Oct. 2013. <http://www.huffingtonpost.com/wait-but-why/generation-y-unhappy_b_3930620.html>.
Photo from Creative Commons.