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I should have been a Millennial

Inspired by NaBloPoMo writing prompt for Thursday, July 10, 2014:

Do you think you were born in the “right” decade, or do you feel like you belong to a different time period?

You know, I’ve pondered this question before – not intentionally, but as a result of two unrelated life experiences, one mine and one I observed from afar. And the somewhat tongue-in-cheek conclusion I reached was that I was not born in the right decade, but rather 25 years or so too early!

Yes, I’m from Generation X… but I think I should have been a Millennial.

My musings on the subject actually started a few years ago when I moved to Windsor. After a very short break to settle in to our new house I began working again – not at a new job, but rather carrying on with my existing employer back in Victoria, a couple of time zones across the country. Successfully setting up and carrying out a situation like this would have been very difficult – if not impossible! – even as little as ten or so years ago but now, thanks to the wonder that is the internet, these days it’s totally feasible.

And I love it! It didn’t take long before I discovered that working from a home office – something that for whatever reason I’d always assumed just wouldn’t be “me” – actually fits like a glove. It’s something I wish I could have done earlier, and something I hope to carry on with indefinitely.

So that’s my experience.

Working from home

The second experience – the one I observed from afar – was actually something I saw on TV, on one of those house hunting shows where people choose their new home from a selection of possibilities. This particular episode featured a young couple – somewhere around their mid-20s, I think – who were planning a move to Italy. I don’t remember exactly what the two of them did for a living, but it was their own online-based business (web design, I believe) that they could work at from any location, as long as they had a computer and internet connection.

As I watched the program and started to think about all the possibilities in this young couple’s world – their ability to pick up and go, to explore the world and experience other cultures and lifestyles, AND to take their job with them – I was filled with a sense of envy and touch of wistful regret for being born in the “wrong” decade and not having had the opportunity to make that particular career choice. After all, despite the fact that being connected and active online is a part of my everyday life NOW and something I wholeheartedly embrace, back when I was in my 20s, computers were basic and the internet wasn’t even around (at least not in a way that was accessible to the majority of society).

But if I was in my 20s today, I’d like to think that the path that couple is taking is the one I’d follow. First I’d get training and education in an internet-related field (a choice that simply wasn’t available back in the day), then I’d set up my own company – a non-location-dependent business – and get to work. And I’d explore the world! I’d live and work in a place for a few years – long enough to understand the language and culture and thoroughly explore all its nooks and crannies, but not so long that I got stuck in a rut – then I’d move on to a new adventure in a new locale. And it would be a great, rich, fulfilling life.

Yes, I really should have been a Millennial!

Do you think you were born in the “right” decade?
Please share!

UBC

NaBloPoMo July 2014

Laurel Regan – Writer, tangler, learner of French and Italian, crocheter, cat herder, needle felter, iPhoneographer, Growlita, iFan, on-and-off politics junkie, 80s music trivia freak, ongoing work in progress.

{ 24 comments… add one }

  • ElaineLK July 10, 2014

    Ah, that sounds like a wonderful plan. I’ve always thought I’d like to live in different cities for maybe two years at a time. However, I am distinctly not a millennial. Technology ties me up in mental knots. I actually think I was born too late. If we’re talking centuries, I’d be in the nineteenth. But decades–maybe I should have been born in 1940 instead of 1950. Then as an editor I could have had a nice secure job in-house without worrying about editing becoming obsolete or being “outsourced” overseas. Or I still could have worked as a freelancer but with paper and pencil throughout my career, and I could have happily retired without having to learn all this newfangled stuff! Oh well.

  • Debbie
    Twitter:
    July 10, 2014

    That’s a fabulous life plan, Laurel and almost makes me wish I was one of those millennials too, but I’m a baby boomer, through and through. Happy to be out of the rat race now, plus I thoroughly enjoyed life in the 60s and 70s. That was a special time in history and I’m glad to have been part of that era.
    Debbie recently posted… MOURNING THE END OF AN ERAMy Profile

  • liz
    Twitter:
    July 10, 2014

    I should have been born in the old days. I love to farm, hunt/fish for my meals and cook, camp outside, hang laundry and technology is a foreign language I can’t seem to learn!
    liz recently posted… Growing Garden 2014My Profile

  • Minette
    Twitter:
    July 10, 2014

    What a great question and I loved your response and reflection. I am also Gen-X and have had the good fortune to create a lifestyle business like you describe that I can take anywhere. I will be working from beautiful Estes Park, CO for three weeks this summer, yippee. Kids get to hang with Grandma and I get to enjoy my downtime and my worktime in the mountains. I love my life but it took a lot of work to get this to point and a supportive spouse who also has flexible work to make it happen in a way that works for both of us. We live in Santa Barbara, CA, both work from home and it rocks. Great for our marriage and our family. Worth striving for!
    Minette recently posted… Completing your Color Wheel Marketing PlanMy Profile

  • Krithika Rangarajan July 10, 2014

    Hey Laurel

    An intriguing question and a VERY interesting answer!

    I was born in 1981, which makes me a Millenial, I suppose, BUT I am quite old-school! I much prefer desktops over these teeny-tiny tablets; dusty libraries and hardcovers over Kindle reads; rotary phones over smart phones; my grand dad’s lullabies over screechy cartoons on YouTube – you get the drift ;)

    That said, I do appreciate the CONVENIENCE of today’s era and the wondrous possibilities and connections due to social media. HOWEVER, as much as I would love to take my laptop and travel, my husband is the ‘let’s settle down in one place’ kind, so I am not able to reap the fruits of the FREEDOM provided by the “Online Era”.

    My ideal job would have been to be an Editor at a Publishing house, much like Debbie. ;)

    But thank YOU for this very eloquent post! #HUGSSSSS

    LOTS of love and TONS of best wishes
    Kitto

    • Laurel Regan
      Twitter:
      July 12, 2014

      Yes, I suppose personality plays into it as well, if someone is more the settling down type! Really, I’ve been that way myself for most of my life, but wonder if it would have been different if I’d been born in a different decade. Food for thought!
      Laurel Regan recently posted… Photo Friday: Black and WhiteMy Profile

  • I always thought I was born to late but now that I read this I whole heartedly agree! Fuel up the jet and let’s go!
    Rena McDaniel-The Diary of an Alzheimer’s Caregiver recently posted… Holiday MadnessMy Profile

  • Kathy July 10, 2014

    Great post and it is a question to ponder. I think I was fortunate and was born in the right era. I am a Baby Boomer and I think it fits me.

    Thanks for sharing

  • Lil July 11, 2014

    I enjoyed your post.
    Lil recently posted… A Simpler TimeMy Profile

  • Kathy
    Twitter:
    July 11, 2014

    I don’t regret one minute for being a baby boomer because I’ve had such an incredible life and NOW get to enjoy the kind of life you describe. I wouldn’t trade my wisdom and perspective at this age for a few decades–even with the technology that is available now. I now get to travel and live where I want PLUS I remember how it was before and can really appreciate the advantages. Thanks for helping me remember that!
    Kathy recently posted… 3 Steps To Right-Sizing Your Work For A Happy LifeMy Profile

  • Vidya Sury
    Twitter:
    July 11, 2014

    I am glad I was born when I was! I loved the 60′s and I love the 2000′s just as much. I enjoyed life before the Internet, and I like it now, too, for the ease of communication and connection. Your post is so enjoyable! :) I like what you’d like to do!
    Vidya Sury recently posted… What’s That Smell? Body OdorMy Profile

  • Sanch
    Twitter:
    July 12, 2014

    I was born in the 80s and think I was born in the right era…the 90s were great in giving me the opportunity to be a child without technology and in the 2000s and later, I’ve embraced technology and love it! I think it’s the best of both worlds…

    It’s amazing how you’ve adapted so brilliantly though! :)
    Sanch recently posted… Time for an Imperfect GiveawayMy Profile

  • Suzanne Fluhr
    Twitter:
    July 14, 2014

    In my blogging “niche” (yes, I just read and commented on your “niche-free” post), there are quite a few Baby Boomer travel bloggers. Some of them, both singles and couples, have adopted the lifestyle you’re thinking of as characteristic of Millennials. They have no permanent abode and wander the world, house-sitting sometimes, couch surfing sometimes and RVing it sometimes. Some of them have built size-able followings and are courted by brands looking to reach the Boomer audience. My husband still has a real day job (and since he loves it, probably will as long as he can). However, it has plenty of opportunity for international and national travel. Now that I’m a recovering lawyer/travel blogger, I get to be a very contented trailing spouse. PS: I became a travel blogger at the suggestion of my self-supporting travel blogger/internet something/everything Millennial son, who said, “Hey, Mom. You should start a travel blog. You love to travel and you love to write.” Bingo!
    Suzanne Fluhr recently posted… “You went where?” – A Visit to Luang Prabang, LaosMy Profile

    • Laurel Regan
      Twitter:
      July 14, 2014

      Love the story of how you became a travel blogger – how fortunate it was that your son made that comment! I definitely don’t think the lifestyle is limited to Millennials – just a little more difficult for others, perhaps, when training/skills aren’t particularly portable, property is involved, and so on.
      Laurel Regan recently posted… Today’s Gratitude List – Linkup No. 38My Profile

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