The Rise of Millennial Anxiety Disorder
Our parents may have had a tougher life, and we may have all the technology at our disposal, but the bottom line remains that millennials are one of the most anxious generations. So much so, that the trend has a name- Millennial Anxiety Disorder!
Due to many choices, obsession with staying connected to the world, student loans that eat into the salary, addiction to an ambitious future, recurrent career changes, and a tight job market- the millennials are one of the most anxiety-ridden generations. So, even though they may have the healthiest of food choices and the best of fitness equipment at their beck and call but their mental health is quite shaky.
Habits that Lead to Millennial Anxiety Disorder
- Sleeping Habits
A well-rested mind finds it hard to feel anxious. However, most millennials suffer from insufficient hours of shut-eye and poor quality of sleep. They do not have a set routine to hit the sack and sleep becomes the first casualty when looking to add more hours to their days. They suffer from millennial Anxiety Disorder because they log into the social met works and check their emails before sleeping. This leads to intense brain activity and disturbs the body’s circadian rhythm.
- Caffeine Addiction
Most of us kickstart our day with coffee or some form of caffeine drink. Many are addicted to their cuppas and find it hard to function without dunking their bodies with many mugs of coffee or tea. Caffeine is a stimulant, and too much of it leads to the body being in a perpetual state of ‘fight or flight.’ When the system is always on tenterhooks, it tends to increase anxiety in the body.
- Too Much Technology Time
Most of us check our phones, throughout the day, sometimes as much as 2000 times a day. The millennials are obsessed with their emails and their messages. They find it hard to ignore a notification. The obsession with the phone is almost becoming an epidemic. Toggling between screens is considered a skill.
- A Reduced Holistic Lifestyle
Most millennials do not eat on time; they skip on sleep and are stingy with their exercise schedule. They do not meditate and find time to relax only during vacations. Taking out just ten minutes a day for mediating and exercising regularly will create a more holistic pattern of life that will help reduce the Millennial Anxiety Disorder.
- Promiscuous Sexual Relations
The generations before us may have experimented with different sexual partners, but the millennials have taken it to another level. Most people tend to have more than three to four sexual partners in their lifetime. They associate the activity of sex with the fulfillment of something within themselves. They prefer short-term pleasure and don’t worry about the long-term implications of indulging in such an emotionally gutting activity. Those who are prone to anxiety and depression may find it hard to dissociate their emotional investment in sex, and this might prove to be detrimental to their mental health.
- Obsessive Behaviors
Most millennials suffer from some kind of obsessive behavior. It could be compulsive shopping, binge drinking, excessive eating, and substance abuse are all different kinds of obsessive behaviors. These provide a false sense of utopian euphoria and a ‘high’ because of the release of endorphins. To experience this ‘high’ again and again, the millennials indulge in obsessive behavior which leads to anxiety issues later on.
- Binge Drinking
Most millennials get into binge drinking for the sake of drinking. This kind of drinking is considered harmful as it is a means of coping with negative feelings. Those who are prone to anxiety do not know how to combat negative emotions.
- Bad Eating Habits
Food, much like sleep, comes lowest in the set of priorities. Most millennials do not eat breakfast and generally skimp on meals to make room for deadlines. Irregular meal times play havoc with insulin levels and reduces metabolism. One feels sluggish, irritable and might even faint. Repeated missing of meals can build up anxiety in the system and cause dizziness, confusion, and other anxiety-related symptoms. Eat healthy, at regular times every day and keep yourself hydrated.
- Sedentary Lifestyle
A sedentary lifestyle increases the risk of developing Millennial Anxiety Disorder. Sitting all day, hunched over their computers and laptops, the millennials are the one generation that has made sitting a lifestyle. They don’t have an active work life, don’t have time for a regular workout post their work hours, and they prefer to commute through wheels than walking.
- Bad Work-Life Balance
Most millennials check their emails and work on their deadlines long after the work hours are over. With no clear demarcation between work and life, they feel a sense of imbalance leading to an increase in anxiety and depression. This could also lead to Millennial Anxiety Disorder as work seeps into every part of their lives.
- Bad Relaxation Activities
Binge-watching Netflix has become a favorite weekend activity of the millennials. But research has proved that watching TV or movies doesn’t relax but leaves one feeling empty and anxious. Going for walks, reading, taking a bath, playing a sport or doing anything else except watching the idiot box are the best options.u
How to Practice Self-Care?
Setting more intrinsic-based goals than those connected to external motivations like money and social status helps to practice self-care. Setting the right kind and achievable goals helps to reduce anxiety.
- Support System
Learn to seek help from family and friends if you are feeling low. Care from people who matter creates a buffer that can take the onslaught of everyday anxieties.
- Calming Techniques
Practice yoga and meditate daily. These help to calm down the mind and get in touch with our inner selves.
- Reduce Caffeine
Cutting out on caffeine suddenly may lead to withdrawal symptoms like headaches, fatigue and irritability. Reduce your consumption slowly to avoid this. You could also switch over to tea or green tea as healthier alternatives.