Is Passion a Millennial Coping Mechanism?

Curated by CLAI

PASSION A COPING MECHANISM? Millennials want jobs that are “meaningful” rather than lucrative. Some would call that proof of our compassion and engagement; I would call it a coping mechanism.

  • Many of us are well aware that job security and pensions are a thing of the past. We know that aside from a few Silicon Valley-bound college grads (or willful dropouts), most of us won’t do better than our parents. So we seek validation and happiness in other ways.
  • Still, many millennials, especially low-income ones, still want the proverbial White Picket Fence: a good job, a house, a family. No wonder seven out of 10 of us want to be entrepreneurs  —it seems like the only way to make it now that the traditional safety nets are eroding.
Boomerang Kid

Boomerang Kid (NYTIMES)

BOOMERANG KIDS: One in five people in their 20s and early 30s is currently living with his or her parents. And 60% of all young adults receive financial support from them. That’s a significant increase from a generation ago, when only 10% young adults moved back home and few received financial support.

  • They appear to be part of a new and permanent life stage. More than that, they represent a much larger anxiety-provoking but also potentially thrilling economic evolution that is affecting all of us.
  • Is living with your parents a sign, as it once was, of failure? Or is it a practical, long-term financial move?
  • Childhood is a fairly recent economic innovation. For most of recorded history, a vast majority of people began working by age 4, typically on a farm, and were full time by 10. By the end of the Civil War, much of American culture had accepted the notion that children under 13 should be protected from economic life, and child-labor laws started emerging around the turn of the century.
  • Eventually, teenagers were no longer considered younger, less-competent adults but rather older children who should be nurtured and encouraged to explore.
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