I know, I know. As Millennials, we’re sick and tired of hearing all about what a terrible generation we are. Unfortunately, since many of us lack so many skills, this list isn’t much different. However, I’d like to validate Millennial feelings just a bit here by saying that most of these issues aren’t entirely our fault.
Regardless, here are 7 seemingly simple skills that almost no Millennial possesses today.
1. Finance Management
Sure, we can blame the job market and horrible minimum wage. We can also blame the schooling and parenting that placed little emphasis on checkbook balancing or any sort of financial planning. Those aren’t the only problems at play here, though.
For starters, we take “keeping up with the Joneses” to the next level, meaning that over 50% of us use credit cards on a regular basis so that we can have the same clothing, cars, and technology items as our friends and family. Studies show that we typically live paycheck to paycheck, oftentimes spending our entire check within days of receiving it. That could partially be because we pay at least one bill late each month, but it could also be purely because nobody ever taught us how to properly manage our money.
Finally, some idiot told us along the way that we would need a college education. So now we’re carrying around $20,000+ in student loan debt while working minimum wage jobs that have nothing to do with that “important” college degree. Essentially, we don’t know how to manage money because we don’t have any.
As Millennials, we’re nothing if not contradictory. We spam social media with outcries about reducing waste and our carbon footprint, then we toss out a pair of pants just because the button broke.
The truth is, we’re not trying to be hypocritical, we literally just do not know how to sew!
Again, maybe this isn’t entirely our fault, as most of our mothers worked during our childhood and we didn’t have time to take home economics classes because we were too busy cramming in that extra AP class to boost our college prospects. However, a large part of the issue is that we simply don’t.
3. Eye Contact
I interviewed for a job about six months ago and left feeling very confident. However, they provided one bit of feedback I hadn’t even considered: a lack of eye contact.
When you really think about it, though, it makes total sense. Between smartphones, computers, and tablets, Millennials spend an average of seven hours per day in front of a screen. When we’re answering emails, scrolling through social media, and watching the latest YouTube trends, we don’t think about connecting our eyes with others’. What’s more, most of us spend more time messaging our friends and partners, so when can we even work on our firm handshakes and conversations with locked eyes?
Everyone loves to compare Millennial statistics, especially when it comes to food and beverage. We make headlines as being indulgent and frivolous, but has anyone sat down to consider why we’re not cooking?
The truth is, only about half of us feel confident in the kitchen. While our working moms may have provided home-cooked meals, they sure didn’t stop to teach us how to prepare them. Also, thanks to our busy schedules of working multiple jobs and side hustles, we also can only allot around 15 minutes per day for meal prep. If you’ve tried cooking anything more complex than Kraft mac and cheese, you know that’s not nearly enough time. But if all that isn’t enough for you, then get this: Millennials are the most stressed out generation currently alive!
Okay, so we’re busy, we’re tired, and we’re not exactly sure what the difference is between chopped and diced. So, is the kitchen dead to us?
Not entirely. While we do love the convenience of affordable meal delivery and 30-minute or less meals, we are also obsessed with Pinteresting recipes to save for a rainy day. Out of all the skills on this list, most of us actually want to cook like Betty Crocker, we just lack the skills and time.
We might be the selfie generation, but that doesn’t mean we actually like the shots we’re snapping with those smartphones. In fact, a recent college campus study found that emotional well-being is the lowest it’s ever been. And since we’re all scrambling to find a job that pays more than $10 per hour, this lack of self-confidence is really harming us.
So, why aren’t we confident in ourselves?
For starters, we feel lonely and unable to self-validate. We wait around for someone to “heart” our most recent post or comment on that selfie with Starbucks coffee in hand, and when it doesn’t come, we feel crushed. What’s more, over 90% of us say we feel like our work directly impacts our self-esteem. And when most of us are barely making it in the job market, there will definitely be a lack in confidence across the board.
6. Home Repair
According to a recent poll by alarm.com, Millennial men don’t do home repair. Period. But why?
Well, life is obviously much more convenient now than it was when our parents first moved out on their own. Thanks to the internet, we can hire someone within minutes to fix a leaky sink or paint the walls. Also, we’re so strapped for cash that shelling out money on items like cordless drills or hammers seems entirely pointless. Finally, our generation just values different skills. While our dads found it important to work with their hands, we value things like home networking and smartphone repair even more.
7. Conflict Resolution
Remember how we just established that Millennials lack self-confidence? Well, we also lack the ability to work out our beef with others, too. Why? Because it’s uncomfortable and we don’t like it.
Since we’re so hard up for jobs, our generation tends to bend over backwards to people please at work, which means we also avoid conflict like the plague. However, we shouldn’t shy away from conflict entirely. “Conflict can be like fertilizer. It stinks while you’re in it, but in the long run, it fosters growth,” says Kira Nurieli, a young professional who works with clients to foster better workplace relationships.
So, while we lack this skill now, it’s probably the first one on this list that we should try to develop.
Admit it: You know that, just like me, you struggle with most of these skills. While you may be that eclectic diamond in the rough who whips up gourmet meals while calling your financial advisor, my gut says that’s probably not the case. Perhaps we can find ways to gain these skills, or maybe we should just start making hilarious memes to turn our pain into laughter?