Millennials aren’t (as) selfish (as you think).
So the saying goes, “Back in our day, we didn’t have cell phones or cameras or computers to help us with our lives. We did it the ye old fashioned way!”
Yes, I agree. We are entitled (comparatively). We have the internet (thank god!) and Uber and our lives have been made so much more efficient. But that doesn’t mean we don’t have our own set of challenges. It also doesn’t mean we are any less than or any more an undeserving species than other generations.
Contrary to popular (mostly older) belief, millennials do care. We care a whole lot about a wide variety of things. We care about the environment, social policy, wildlife, government, human rights and poverty. The list goes on. But the only difference between donating a dollar a day or signing up to run a bake sale is that we need to be authentic about it. We need to know what we’re talking about and speak from the heart, versus repeating a fact sheet verbatim.
From our formative years, we’ve been conditioned to give and do for others. Remember selling those boxes of chocolate almonds and Caramilk bars? Or having to work 100 hours of community service before being allowed to graduate high school? I do. We know what giving is all about but instead of being mandated to do it, we need to want to do it. We need to crave it, demand for it, be empowered by it. And we are capable of all those things.
So instead of hearing the same script or the same program of how the world is going to end, ask us for how we think we can change the world. It may be far-fetched, outrageous, or simple-minded, but at least it starts a conversation. And every great movement has to start somewhere.