Generation Z is the new label placed on our youth today. They are the first generation of kids who have been completely connected to social media since birth. If you’re like me, you’re having trouble remembering how these generations are different. Here’s a quick guide to identify the youth since the Baby Boomers:
Born between 1966-1976 (41 million)
Referred to as the “lost” generation who were often “latchkey” kids.
Born between 1977-1994 (71 million)
Referred to as sophisticated and tech wise, and indulged by Cable TV, satellite radio and the internet.
Born between 1995-2012 (23 million)
Referred to gender fluid, hyper-stressed, connected but lonely.
According to The Guardian, Generation Z kids are online 3 hours per day and their most popular apps include Snapchat, Instagram and messaging app Kik. This Gen Z group has more mental health issues that center around low self-esteem, anxiety, depression and self-harm than previous generations.
They are generally unhappy with themselves probably because they have access to news and social media 24/7. They see how many parties they weren’t invited to and how everyone seems to be having fun without them. Although they might have “1000” friends, they really don’t know most of them.
These kids don’t get to “play” or take breaks from academic and social pressures. Whether or not parents or teachers state this to them directly, the kids know that competition is fierce and they have to fight to succeed.
The good news is that Gen Z kids are smoking fewer cigarettes and drinking less alcohol than previous generations.
I think that with information overload, Generation Z kids are overwhelmed with what’s available to them and what everyone else is doing. I believe that if these kids have the opportunity to do one project – something that they are fascinated by – they will benefit from focusing their energies and developing their projects. This in itself will build self-worth and confidence, which would also make them happier.