Millennials – those between the ages of 22 – 35 – are not only the largest living generation, but it’s estimated that by 2025, the so called “me generation” will make up 75% of the work force.

They are reshaping our economy in almost every way possible. Think Uber, Fitbit, Etsy, Lululemon and Twitter; all successful companies that continue to adapt as a result of the Millennial trend. However, although this powerful, largest living adult generation are pretty much shaping the future of things to come, they are in trouble.

The belief that younger generations are generally shielded from the burden of poor health is proving to be a myth with dire consequences. About 44% of older millennials born between 1981 - 1988 report having been diagnosed with at least one chronic health condition. Hypertension, diabetes and obesity are not only affecting Millennials’ health and lifespan, but also their bank accounts. Studies show that those with at least one chronic condition, spend twice as much on out-of-pocket health care expenses than those without any medical issues.

Financial debt, over consumption of social media, always connected work environments, and heavier workloads with fewer resources are causing higher levels of stress, anxiety and depression and the Deloitte Global 2020 Millennial Survey echoes this finding. 18 – 39 year olds have currently the highest rates of anxiety and depression.

Yes, they go to the gym, but studies found that 33% of Millennials will skimp on health to focus on their careers. Also, when it comes down to what Millennials spend their money on, they ranked experiences/travel first, followed by dining out and technology – not health and wellness.

It is safe to say that we’re dealing with a particularly overwhelming time in history. Covid-19 has forever changed the climate of physical as well as mental health and we’ll be managing the collateral damage for decades to come.

So, if you’re part of the largest swath of today’s working world, here’s what you can do to improve your health:

  • Prioritize personal time the same way you would prioritize a meeting. The post-pandemic workday lasts on average at least 48 minutes longer than the pre-pandemic workday. Because of this, it’s important to set boundaries and take time to recharge. You need breaks; walk the dog, enjoy a quick workout, or do a few pages of leisurely reading from your favourite book.
  • Disconnect, even if it’s just for a little while. The “always on” culture can leave us with the impression that we have to be thinking and striving about what we’re going to do next at all times. Constant reminders and expectations fuel anxious thoughts. Step away from computers, turn off notifications, and put phones aside.
  • Stop and smell the roses (or coffee). Enjoy the small pleasures of life; be mindful of what’s happening right now.
  • Fight the stigma. If you’re struggling with stress and anxiety, seek help from professionals. Acknowledging and talking about your mental health shows strength and courage.
  • Build a support team. Attend social events (even virtually) and engage in conversations beyond the day-to-day grind.

1 in 3 Millennials prioritize career over health and are frequently referred to as the “burnout generation”. Let’s change this.

Source:  cnbc.com, hbr.org, news.sanfordhealth.org, healthline.com, harvardpilgrim.org, sastudy.co.za, ift.org, forbes.com, bcbs.com

DISCLAIMER: The information on this website is for educational purposes only, and is not intended as medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. If you are experiencing symptoms or need health advice, please consult a healthcare professional.