We can all be Perennials
Which generation are you in? Do you know?
I’m at the tail end of the Baby Boomers but I have very little in common what they are supposed to stand for. They are seen as competitive, defined by their status at work, in possession of accumulated wealth and property, and with good pensions.
I don’t identify at all with Generation X, which followed the Baby Boomers, and seem to have more in common with the Millenials, born between the early 80s and 2000s. (With a few exceptions, such as loathing the word awesome!)
I can relate to Millenials’ search for meaning in work, preferring it to status and pay level, and their hipsterish rejection of mass consumerism and preference for experience over things. But I’m old enough to be the mother of many of them!
If you are a parent of adult children, or work with younger colleagues, you might be affected by ‘generational blurring’. This means that regular contact with the younger generation influences your tastes and attitudes to things like diet, clothes and culture.
I don’t want to be considered a Baby Boomer and I can’t be a Millenial. So I was intrigued when Gina Pell, an American tech entrepreneur and creative director, coined the term ‘Perennial’ – ‘because age ain’t nothin’ but a number.’
She defines Perennials as ‘relevant people of all ages who live in the present time, know what’s happening in the world, stay current with technology, and have friends of all ages.’ Perennials, she says, ‘stay curious, mentor others, are passionate, compassionate, creative, confident, collaborative, global-minded, risk takers’.
Sounds good to me, and it seems many other women (and men, too, I’m sure) feel the same way, judging by this Telegraph article about the ‘ageless generation’.
Another plus is that the Perennial label isn’t divisive in the way that talk of selfish Baby Boomers and entitled Millenials is.
Are you a Perennial? Do you mind being identified by a generational moniker? Or do you think they are outdated and irrelevant?
(Photo by Thomas Hafeneth)