As a 24 going on 25 year old adult in this world, I often hear my fellow colleagues mention about the term millennials and how I belonged there.
“This is your generation!” They would say. I can’t really deny that I didn’t belong there, I am after all- a person reaching her young adulthood in the year 2000’s. But truth be told, I couldn’t find anything about millennials relatable to me, which in retrospect could be a blind sight. But I do agree that we are one of the rare generations connected with technology growing up.
Do we have high expectations? Maybe. Are we acheivement oriented? Maybe (or maybe it could have been the fact that we were raised in Singapore to study, get good grades, make the checks to our check box and be a all rounder acheiver). But personally, I was very intrigued by Goldman Sach’s page on Millennials. Check it out here. The list goes on and on- so I only did a few screenshots of a few pictures.
Could you relate? I definitely could. I mean, i definitely am shocked by the fact that riding a uber (pool) everyday for the 10 years is still cheaper than owning a car in Singapore. So why get a car?! It’s crazy.
What scared me the most about Goldman Sach’s research was that they knew my spending habits, thoughts, buying patterns and even how technology weaved into our every day lives as a person living in the year 2000’s. And the worse bit was that even I didn’t know how easily read I was as a consumer. Man, people put a lot into pretty infographics this day (i love them!).
That being said, I came to the conclusion that I was very underprepared as compared to my peers in terms of finances, savings, insurances and bonds. In fact, I realize that a deep part of me wanted to see change in the world- from discrimination to addiction and to people in need. And I wanted to see that change happen through the lives I met. That was a very large reason why I chose social work, as compared to all my peers out there who ran their lives chasing their communications/doctorates/banking dreams, which is great for them. But there are moments when I get upset and ask myself if I am in the right field because I never get the affirmation (emotional support or encouragement) that I seek in my job be it from above (divine intervention ha-ha) to my family , loved ones, and to my friends.
Two and a half years in the same job, with a little more responsibilities, cracking at the seams of struggle and despair between juggling schoolwork, work, personal life and all in one (while being a extremist millennial sloth)- I found myself in this rut. I needed a sign and I figured that if I didn’t get it soon it would be time for me to rethink my options.
Just as life has it when you run busy and dry on your day to day thoughts- something interesting happened. For the first time, my director at work commended me for taking up a case that wasn’t easy at our weekly staff meeting. Everyone clapped for me, but because I had never (literally never) ever had anyone clap for me on a professional basis- I said thank you, and reported my numbers in a attempt to distract myself from my social awkwardness/anxiety from coming up. That might seem like a humblebrag, but really, it wasn’t. It was just a short affirmation that I had asked for to hold my place in Social Work because we never seem to get answers here of what we’re doing and if it’s right or wrong to help someone. Ethically or unethically, by the book or not by the book. And that was enough for me.
Truth be told, this gave me many things to think about. For one, I never once thought my job could be my life. But this instance has led me to realize that though it isn’t my life, it encompasses so much more than just a salary that you are paid with every month, it encompasses the views you take with you in life and how they change with each person’s lives you take with you. It changes you, the way you work with people in your personal life as well and as a whole. Worse still, it doesn’t stop changing you until you decide to leave this field.
Its hilarious really. Someone told me the other day, “Don’t use your social work techniques on me. It’s so irritating.” (hahahaha)
The truth in being is that we have somany things on our plates that others do not know about. And if you had taken the time to get to know us better instead of making a sweeping comment about us, you would have done well in our field.
I love the journey I took before I chose social work. I am thankful that despite having twisted God’s arms many times for an answer, he never fails to send others to remind me when he knows that I really need the affirmation.
So dear friends, I will end off with one of my thoughts for tonight.
Do good by you, and beautiful things will happen.