Millennials: The Last Generation of Social Interaction
Technology has changed the way we lived forever. We know the benefits of technology such as how it allows family members to see each other from across the globe, gives you information within seconds and helps businesses grow faster than ever before. However, there a ton of downfalls as well. One of the more notable ones is the way we communicate.
As a millennial, I grew up communicating the normal way. I relayed my message through words, not text messages or emojis. When I needed to talk to somebody privately, I would pull them out of the room as opposed to sending them an iMessage. When I saw an intriguing woman, I’d walk up to her and introduce myself instead of sending a DM. She couldn’t fake how she looked either (besides some makeup) unlike half of the people on Tinder nowadays.
I know it may sound like I’m a 60-year old wishing the world is how it once was but that’s not the point I’m trying to make. Kids growing up with the technology so readily available aren’t learning how to interact with people outside of their phone and it’s a problem.
As much as people like to rip on millennials for a plethora of ridiculous reasons, there’s a decent chance we’re the last generation for quite some time that knows how to interact with others.
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Millennials are widely classified as anyone born from 1977 to 1995, anyone born after 1995 is considered Gen Z. While home telephones have been around for a while, they didn’t hinder anyone’s ability to interact with the outside world like many of the inventions subsequent to 1995.
Computers become more accessible to the common person and allowed people to access the world through the internet. Video games were at the top of every kid’s Christmas list and put them in a virtual world for hours at a time. Cell phones became more advanced and gave everyone the opportunity to hide behind a screen all day. When kids are supposed to be learning how to communicate and interact with others, they’re now spending it glued to electronics.
According to KidsHealth.org, by three years old, a child should be able to “routinely combine three or four words into sentences” and “understand what it means to ‘put it on the table.'” We’re not here to stuff stats down your throat about the percentage of kids who aren’t able to do this in 2017, but we bet it’s a lot less children than it was thirty years ago.
So often we find children under the age of three watching YouTube on laptops, playing the newest Super Mario and looking for games on their parent’s latest iPhone. It’s a different world, we get it.
Nonetheless, all of these activities that children display are damaging their social interaction skills. You don’t have to make eye contact with the speaker of the documentary you’re watching. You don’t have to read body language when responding to a character in a video game. You don’t even have to speak when asking for recommendations of a new game to download. It’s all passive.
While children are supposed to be interacting with others, they’re now interacting with technology. If this doesn’t change, they’ll have a tough time in meetings, interviews and everyday life as you actually have to speak to people face to face. Crazy, huh?