Updated: Dec 3, 2020
living in a generation that defines itself by productivity and endless possibilities
When you ask a person in our generation about what we are like, you will probably hear that we are living with digital connections and are craving individuality. Social media allows us to stay connected with people or things we like. That is something that wasn’t there before, and we grew with it. It is hidden because we don’t realize what those new digital platforms do to us. Always new information, different views, new messages on WhatsApp where you feel the urge to respond as soon as possible.
We want to be individual, yet at the same time minimalistic and live an environmentally friendly lifestyle. We want to be perfect based on our own standards of perfection but at the same time, we crave unplanned and spontaneous moments and pictures. Also, we want to live free with the possibility of being here one day, and being somewhere else the next day but also, we want something in our life that is sustainable. I hope I could give you a little insight into how our generation thinks and feels. It can be challenging, yet also evolutionary to understand our place in the world.
Digital connection is our door towards endless possibilities to learn and do whatever we want. Especially in the time we are living in right now where we are spending more time in our own four walls, the internet is always there and fills our time with countless opportunities and productivity options. It allows us to study online, stay in contact with our loved ones, and gives us ideas on how to spend our day. It could be a DIY (Do It Yourself) that you find on Pinterest or listening to any music album from Taylor Swift that is out there. We can stay connected in a world that is currently filled with separation due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Just imagine cutting off the internet for a single day. You wake up, not being able to check your phone, not being able to listen to Spotify, not being able to double-check your meetup location with a friend while the world news can’t reach you. These are just a few examples that show how our generation is becoming one that I would call Generation P, a generation filled with possibilities and productivity based on digital connection.
When you meet a stranger, you can see how this phenomenon takes place in our daily lives. When you get to know a new person of course you talk about what they are doing to fill their days with. You talk about your name, where you are from, and what you are doing. And what you are doing is automatically connected with either your current working position or the one you want to get. A lot of us are more interested in what a person values in life and is passionate about than to get to know their working experience but we still ask about it. It’s a weird circle.
Our generation tends to spend their time doing things that are directly beneficial to their future. It is so hard for most of us to just be in the moment and enjoy whatever we are doing without feeling like we need to produce something. Having two jobs, three hobbies and at least one big passion seems to be normal for our generation. To never stop learning and to turn our generated information into economic success implies that this is the way we aim to spend our time. But to wake up and see that this is just a frame that we created ourselves is step one in understanding that we are trapped in our own generated way of life.
But where does that come from?
Adulting comes with the responsibility to find an individual balance between work and free time. It sounds so easy but for us, it’s pretty unlikely that we have jobs that separate these two big parts. We often study or do jobs that can be done whenever and wherever we want. The clearly defined line disappears and is more like a colour panel on which you mix yellow with red and your result is orange.
I think everyone knows that moment when family or friends ask us how our job or our studies are going, and we want to say: yeah it’s not going so well because I feel like I can do more or need to do something else as well. The pressure that we create for ourselves is huge and we often sweep it under the rug and don’t talk about it. Even though we know we are not alone with that feeling.
A lot of people use social media platforms to share their life experiences with others. This enables them to create their little bubble of a positive life. But doing something and keeping it to yourself is one of the best feelings. I encourage you to try it. These little mysteries that we keep inside ourselves can bring so much more pleasure than hearing other people’s opinions about it. Our Generation P feels the urge to always do something and share it with others. Overstimulation starts with too much information that our brains receive and need to process. This can include events and job possibilities we have in the 21st century. Unattainable expectations due to comparisons to other people that we put out there for ourselves are just the icing on the cake.
We often find ourselves in so many conversations, in so much information exchange, so many travel opportunities and so many work options. We have adapted to a life with endless options and now we need to learn what it is like to create our own home inside of us and live our life with digital pauses.
To find out what we want to do in our generation is like a road with many possible stops and crossroads but no final destination. It reminds me of a day that you spend in Las Vegas, having endless places and machines where you can gamble but you don’t know which one is your lucky one. There are always new opportunities or in this scenario new hotels and machines that invite you to play your game of life.
The challenge we are facing today is that we always see other people doing something, especially when it is posted online. Either you see a new TikTok that shows you some new dance moves or you see on other social media platforms what your friends and other people you follow do and then share. Even if we don’t want to, one part of ourselves is automatically comparing our life to the one you see on your digital screen. Even if it is just for a millisecond, there is still the feeling of “I need to try the same thing”, or “I need to go to the same place,” which leads us to assume that we need to use all possibilities to be productive.
As Generation P, let’s have a different view towards productivity and learn to create something magical without using all our possibilities.
drawings by pigwire