"Millennials" . . . are really something. Frustrating and nearly impossible to pin down. I'm seeing traits in nearly all of them that are universal. Okay, yes I must generalize a bit of course, as there are almost always exceptions . . . but overall I am finding them ("Millennials") alarming. I don't know how the world is going to operate when they are thoroughly at the helm of things. Smart phones and social media seem to be at the core of what develops them, not real, on the ground experience.
For instance . . . one of their more infuriating traits . . . is that they apparently believe that if they just put up a facade of how things are . . . it's just as good as if they really were that way. It is like they are living a virtual reality all the time and so long as whatever they are nominally engaged in is able to be "photographed" and "posted" on Facebook or Instagram, the work is done. You don't really need to know how to play an instrument . . . you don't really need to know how to cook a gourmet meal . . . you don't really have to be a world traveler, or an actual expert in this or that craft or discipline. All you have to do is capture a moment, which is staged, to make it LOOK like you are skilled or proficient in the thing . . . and that's all that matters. But when any real work or ongoing discipline is required--well, no way. That part isn't going to happen. Rolling your sleeves up and ACTUALLY, IN REALITY perfecting or mastering a task or event . . . is not required. Just make a big pronouncement and show of something that LOOKS like mastery . . . and you're good to go. Especially with a cute, pithy hashtag or narrative.
I also find that they will promise the moon--they will announce, "Oh yes, I can do that. I will do it perfectly, trust me." And they are so convincing, that up front, you think, "cool, this is great; I can rely on you" . . . and then the time comes to show the results and you find it's all been a charade, a "Potemkin village". They will fake their way through it and be shocked and often outraged that you dare question the usually pathetic results.
Furthermore, and even more frustrating, is that they seem to really have no idea that they aren't ACTUALLY, IN REALITY pulling off the task or objective. It's as if they don't have ANY experience with ACTUALLY, IN REALITY finishing something to commendable completion. They want to be able to just fake it, get all kinds of attention and accolades . . . and call it good.
The scary part, to me, is that I'm not sure that they are even CAPABLE or ABLE to take direction and achieve a specific, measurable goal. They will try, imagine themselves to be expert, proudly hold up their finished work (which is usually half-a**ed and only approximately close), take a selfie and glowingly march on to the next fantasy project, as self-imagined, feted conquerers.
It is like there is no capacity for serious discernment/judgment as to whether something is ACTUALLY, IN REALITY, objectively correct . . . compared to a failed version of the same. "Close but no cigar" is just fine with them. In fact, it's as good as it gets and you're lucky to get that much!
I suspect all the subjective, relativistic cultural philosophy which is now de rigueur--as taught in school curriculum, pop psychology, pop culture and most religious regimes--combined with instant gratification emotional highs via social media, combined with what now seems the ubiquitous obsession to be quickly famous and lauded . . . is what's at the root of this "Millennial" syndrome. . .
Also, they are raised and taught things like "everybody's a winner" (no trophies) . . . and that subjective feelings are the life guide (versus ie., principle or objective morality/truth) . . . and a lot of them have been emotionally abandoned by working moms and absent fathers, raised by day-care strangers, so that they are constantly starved for and seeking attention, finding all their self worth in, ie., how many "followers", "friends", "likes" and "shares" they can track through their Potemkin media profile.
On the other hand (which to me only makes it more vexing) is that a good portion of them are quite gifted--prodigies of sorts, able to pick up or mimic various talents and abilities which, in the past did require simply a lot of hard, persistent work. So much comes so easily to them that they never get to ACTUALLY, IN REALITY the experience of working, struggling, failing, achieving etc., progressive, ongoing stages of mastery. They are able to fairly well mimic or learn some basics of a thing fast . . . and then rush to capture a moment of it for global publishing . . . but, with the attention span of a mosquito, never stick to that thing long enough to objectively flesh it out.
For instance, they might watch a Youtube of some guy playing the guitar part for "Stairway To Heaven", reproduce it effectively, considering themselves now an artist of the highest order, yet, if you stuck them in a room of REAL musicians, they wouldn't have the slightest clue how to simply jam the blues. Or, they might learn how to make a certain gourmet entree . . . mimicking the cook on the screen . . . then considering themselves to now be a master chef-- but be utterly lost if told to make a basic eggs, bacon, toast and hash-browns breakfast for, say a group of 6. . . .
My wife's observation on them is that they are "unteachable." They are "experts" at any and everything and don't have the care, time or patience, or especially HUMILITY . . . to ACTUALLY, IN REALITY listen, take direction, remember and apply instructions or some teaching or accept advice given from years of ACTUAL, IN REALITY life experience. No, THEY are already the experts. They will show YOU how great they are by themselves--how "amazing" and "awesome" they are "naturally". . . . Lol.
Yes, of course there are exceptions (heh, I'm waiting to see one!.....just kidding... . . . . eh, sorta....).
And I know that some of this behavior described is typical of age. You do get older, wiser and (hopefully) more humble and contrite about how much you really don't know or do that well. . . .
I know that almost everyone alive thought that they were the smartest person in the world during their teens and twenties. But what I am not seeing with this current crop, is the ability to move on from that. Even in their 30s they are still seeming to be obsessed with quick, cheap notoriety, and it doesn't matter if it's gained through facade and fantasy. They are only becoming even bigger and more pompous "experts" and "know-it-alls" as the self delusion continues unabated. . . .
Heh, just thought I'd get that off my chest:)....