In the world of ‘millennial pink’, filters, and hipster coffee shops, there’s also anxiety, depression and unrealistic expectations.
It’s no secret that Muslim women are already faced with unrealistic expectations of how we should live our lives. These expectations are assigned to us from the Muslim community that basically stem from ancient traditions. Seems like a lot to handle, right? It doesn’t end there, because for Muslim women, you have to couple that with being a millennial, where anxiety and depression are common. Why? Because the millennial generation is constantly racing against society’s clock to attain success.
We are constantly bombarded with the appeal of success. Although social media does have its pros, the major downside is the constant evaluation of our own success in comparison to others.
In an article written by Melanie Curtin on Inc., it was revealed that a large number of millennials said that social media was a trigger for them, and seeing how well everyone else seemed to be doing made them feel worse. It made them feel like they needed to catch up, and time was running out to do so.
Given all of this, I guess it’s no surprise that millennials are known as the most anxious generation, according to NEWSWEEK.
Everyone desires success. However, because millennials are known as the social media generation, we’ve set high expectations based on curated feeds that depict a perfect life full of success.
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Back to the issue of Muslim millennials: We have two sets of expectations when it comes to a host of aspects, such as education, career, marriage, and starting a family. The list is endless. Society tells us we need to be successful doctors or entrepreneurs before 30. Then there’s the Muslim community that tells us we need to be married before 30.
When do we get a break?
“This generation has the highest likelihood of having unmet expectations with respect to their careers and the lowest levels of satisfaction with their careers at the stage that they’re at,” Sean Lyons, co-editor of Managing the New Workforce: International Perspectives on the Millennial Generation, told TIME. “It is sort of a crisis of unmet expectations.”
Okay, so what are we trying to tell you? Give yourself a break! Attaining success is not a sprint. You don’t have to accomplish everything right now. As Gary Vaynerchuk constantly reiterates, focus on the journey, rather than the destination. Keep working at it every day, and you will attain success. Allow yourself to live your life the way you want to, not the way someone’s Instagram photo makes you feel like you should.
It’s easy to get caught up in this world. So caught up that we lose sight of what’s truly important. We need to stop, and reevaluate when we start to feel like we are running out of time. We need to remember that everything is written and planned by Allah (SWT). Patience is key.
Allah (SWT) tells us in Surah Al Imran 3:200: “O you who believe, persevere and endure and remain stationed and fear Allah that you may be successful.”
Perhaps it’s about time we do just that.