Modern Problems Need Modern Solutions
The Gen-Z have a lot to toss and juggle between their hands thus giving them more reasons to worry and stress. Unlike previous generations, the Gen-Z have been blessed with the gifts of the Internet, Social Media and a boisterous lifestyle. This string of generation is, in most ways, the complete opposite of the former generations. And this is a potential reason why the two rarely land on common grounds when discussing a topic.
It is no longer the pressure of studying and getting a 9-5 job that haunts an 18 year old today.Along with this the iGen’ers have to deal with haunting peer pressure, the stigma of alwaysgetting compared to their long lost cousin and of course the excruciating burden of leading a fancy social life.
Who Really are the iGen’ers/Gen-Gs:
- Open to and tolerant of different people with different races, sexual orientation, cultures.
- More cautious in taking risks
- Adequately aware and concerned about economy and equality
- Less interested in reading books, magazines or newspapers
- Feeling more depressed than former generations
- Spending enormous amounts of time using social media and smartphones; sometimes well into the early hours of the morning; and,
- More conservative politically and less interested in identifying with a political party. (18- to 29-year-old voters are now a larger percentage of all voters than those over 65.)
Causes of Stress in iGen’ers and how to Cure Them
A. Studies and Exams
According to reports stated by National Crime Records Bureau — 8934 Indian students dosuicide every due to extreme exam pressure. That is one student every hour.What are the Reasons Behind Examination and Study Stress:
- The fear of failing
- A sense of unpreparedness
- Family and peer pressure of performing excellently
- Lack of studying time
- The desire of a certain result
- Inferiority complex and lack of self confidence
- Don’t understand/Don’t have interest in what they’re studying
- An undying sense of competition
- Have other distractions in life
How to Overcome Stress and Pressure?
- Ask for help-Discuss your feelings with a responsible confidant
- Stick to a routine and follow it faithfully
- Get a good night sleep
- Reward yourself– Go for movie breaks, finish your favourite book/series, go for a run
- Stay Focused– Realise that Education is priority and don’t let meaningless stuff distract you
- No to Junk, Yes to Greens
- Cut on Energy Drinks, More if Water
- Breathe-Whenever feeling a lot of pressure or anxiety, eg. before an exam, practice
- breathing and cooling your mind down
- Therapy– We all need it!
Ultimately, remember that if you are having a sense of anxiety or stress then you are not alone. Sometimes people keep anxiety a secret because it’s hard to talk about, they don’t want to seem weak. But when it comes to anxiety talking about it and having support helps a lot.
B. Peer Pressure in School and College
Each one of us have to deal with some sort of peer pressure in our lives. Peer pressure hits us in different ways in different stages of life. Initially at the start of High School, then College and at times at Workplace.
The level of peer pressure has drastically increased in iGen’ers and all thanks to the rapid
availability of all things wrong and the pride of money. Most iGen’ers give in to this due to their insufficiency in coping with various forms of peer pressures that come disguised as “fun” or a corrupt “social status”.
Myths About Peer Pressure
- All peer pressure is negative-It can be rewarding if it pulls out a person of his/her
- comfort zone and lands them in an exciting opportunity
- Giving in to peer pressure will make you acceptable in society
- Bullying/Cyberbullying in the name of peer pressure is normal and everybody has to
- go through it
- Not giving in to peer pressure will make you lonely
- Peer pressure does not impact your studies, professional and personal life
- Needing to Act or Dress a certain way
Types of Societal Peer Pressures Among iGen’ers
- Drugs and Alcohol- In a teens drugs survey it was found that 55% iGen’ers started doing drugs and alcohol after being pressured by their friends
- Sexual Activities
- Dangerous/Risky Behaviour
“One of the most important areas where peer pressure leads to regret is sex. It may seem
like everyone is hooking up, but statistics show that many fewer young adults have hookup
sex than you might think.”
How to Handle Peer Pressure?
- Try making friends that have similar interests, family values. Never make friends for their social status.
- If something doesn’t feel right, then abort it immediately even if your friend(s) is forcing you not to do so.
- Talk to the person who is pressuring you into situations or actions that you are not comfortable with. Let him/her know how you feel.
- Have secret codes with your parents to text them immediately if you feel you or your friends are in an unsafe situation.
- Be comfortable and confident in saying a stiff “NO”.
- Realise that you would be equally appreciated and liked even if you don’t do things are “cool” and acceptable for others.
- Realise that individuality is a gift and must be embraced.
C. Less is More – Digital Pressure
Gen-Z have never experienced life without the internet, most of them were toddlers when
Facebook launched back in the year 2004. Due to such availability of the internet, the iGen’ers are under brutal pressure of establishing their “image”/“brand” online. Today millions of iGen’ers have social media accounts on various platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Reddit, Snapchat and more. Gen-Z uses upto 5 different social media channels everyday.
In all these Social Media platforms there is an undenied pressure of having more followers,
more friends, more likes. This haunting want of attention in their “cool life” has made the Gen-Zs shallow. In a report presented by Business Insider it was released that 54% Generation Zs use social media for looking at what other people are doing while 73% use to talk to their friends.
The staggering 54% of spying into other people’s life is harmful at levels that we cannot even
imagine. It starts envying others who have a fancy life followed by mental pressure of comparing ourselves with them and ultimately using wrong means to project a false image of our life.
BusinessWire, in a report, stated that –
“48% of Gen Z Say Social Media Makes Them Feel Anxious, Sad or Depressed.
58% Are “Seeking Relief” from Social Media”
Even more Gen Z’ers are thinking about quitting social media
61% are taking a break from social media
24% consider quitting because of negative self-esteem (up from 17% in 2017)
An increase in negative psychological impact
48% of Gen Z say social media makes them feel anxious, sad or depressed
27% report experiencing a negative impact on body image (up from 18% in 2017)
Positive outcomes result when they reduce social media use
30% report feeling less stressed or anxious (up from 24% in 2017)
25% report improved self-esteem (up from 16% in 2017)
How to Kick the Social Media Stress Away?
- Schedule time to use Social Media. Limit yourself to 20-30 minutes per day.
- Put your phone on silent and turn your data off. Not hearing a notification bell in every 5 minutes will help you from being distracted and will also suppress the urge of checking your phone.
- Step Away – Always take regular breaks from Social Media. Try using only those apps that you use maximum to communicate with people. For eg- use more of WhatsApp and
- Be Selective – Be mindful of your social media use. Decide a purpose of your social media account. Think before following an account. Think of pros and cons of following them. Ask yourself questions.
- Be Creative & Authentic – Use Social Media for your benefit. Put out your talent. Don’t try to be someone else. Always keep the fact in mind that majority things you will see on social media are fake and not true.
“Social media breeds positive communities and experiences which can generate and then
become led by influencers, as seen with [Parkland shooting survivor and activist] Emma
Gonzalez and teens for gun reform.”
– Hannah Forbes