Many young people in their 20’s are struggling today because there is no road map for life after school. Up until the age of 18 or 22 (depending on if you went to college), life was structured and scheduled. You knew when to show up for class and what work you had to turn in to get a good grade. You knew if you earned enough credits you would graduate. Many of the classes you took were chosen for you and you didn’t have to make many decisions.
But life after school is very different. Maybe you are in a job that you hate. Maybe your struggling to have a career. There is no one to tell you definitively if you should go back to school or move to a new city. Here are some of the difficulties that are unique to millennials:
Struggles with Relationships
You may be feeling different pressures when it comes to relationships. Do you want to date just for fun, but feel like there is pressure for you to be thinking about marriage?
It also may be difficult to navigate your relationship with your parents. They may still treat you like a kid or a teenager and you want to be treated like an adult. You may feel lonely because you moved away from your college town and now you have to start over with making friends.
In addition, society’s rules about gender and sexuality are being challenged. There may be more openness among your peers to try out homosexuality or being transgender. This may come in direct conflict with how your parent’s generation views sexuality and can cause conflicts in families. Young adults may struggle with understanding their own sexuality.
Navigating Social Media and Technology
The world is changing at a rapid pace. Millennials are the first generation that have grown up with social media. There is a lot to learn through trial and error with all of this new technology. It can affect your relationships, your career and your mental health.
Young people have noticed that social media can add to feelings of depression and other mental health issues. You may feel left out of what your peers are doing or that other people’s lives are better than your own. It can be difficult to know how much is too much and the fine line of when social media can be harmful to our psychological health.
What Am I Going To Do With My Life?
This is a huge question! Careers aren’t what they used to be 40 years ago. Your parents or your grandparents may have had one job their whole career. Now it is not uncommon to switch jobs many, many times over the course of one’s lifetime.
You may have completed your education, but for many millennials they still have to figure out what they can do with that degree. You may be able to rely on others to answer questions or tell you about their experiences, but ultimately you have to make this decision on your own. And what if you make the wrong one?
Failure is something millennials as a whole avoid because they haven’t had that much experience with it. Is your fear of failure holding you back from doing something you really want to do? What if you could work through that fear of failure so you can live the life you really want?
Sometimes the stress and pressure of all of these big life decisions is too much to handle. Maybe you react by shutting down or feeling depressed. Maybe you feel so anxious about everything that you have started drinking more than you should or are having trouble coping with doing the activities of every day life.
If you are exhibiting any of these signs it might be time to go to counseling. A counselor is someone who can help you process through these big life transitions, teach you coping skills, and help you to feel more confident.