Contrary to popular beliefs, millennials are not teenagers with no sense of the real world. Anyone born between 1981 and 1996 is considered a millennial. Thus, millennials are currently anywhere between the ages of 23 and 38. This group of people has had real-world experiences. They’ve lived through tough stuff and made their way through it. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), one in five American adults experience a mental illness. NAMI also reports that half of all chronic mental illnesses begin by age 14, while 75% begin by the age of 24. Millennials, and even the younger generation (Generation Z), deal with very real mental illnesses on a daily basis. Those older than current millennials tend to believe some unrealistic stereotypes about the younger generation, including the belief that they are entitled and addicted to technology. While these things may be true to an extent — with increased technology, instant gratification has grown — millennials are also able to advocate for issues that are important to them. Movements have been created and awareness raised. This is true of the culture of mental health and addiction. Millennials are working toward destigmatizing mental health and addiction. They know it is commonplace in today’s society, and also that things change when they speak up. So, how can millennials forge ahead and create change in the mental health community? Pinnacle Recovery is here to tell you precisely that!
Bridge the gap
Millennials are great at making connections. With increased ways to network, they are working toward meeting people and forming relationships in the community to create change. One crucial way millennials can help to spur change in the mental health community is by bridging the gap between the younger and older generations. Millennials can bring about change by respectfully challenging the ideas of their parents and grandparents. This older group of people are not exempt from mental health issues and addictions. They do, however, tend to sweep these things under the rug. Shame and embarrassment surround these topics for them. Millennials can also increase awareness using social media. This is a way to reach people who they do not have personal connections with. There are always ways to reach new people and educate them in a respectful way.
Lead by example
Another way to create change in the mental health community is for millennials to lead by example. They do this by speaking up and reaching out for treatment if they need it. They can urge their family and friends to seek help when they need it, as well. Although social media has its downfalls, there’s something special about creating a space where ideas can flow from anyone to anywhere. When leading by example, millennials can influence those around them in positive ways.
Pinnacle Recovery is here to help. We want to bridge the gap and lead by example, too. If you’re struggling with a mental illness or co-occurring addiction, we can help you. Call our staff today to learn more about the programs we offer. We can be reached at 1-866-301-0573. We can’t wait to hear from you.