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A new study shows that fewer Gen Zers are thriving compared to Millennials of the same age, and members of Gen Z are far less likely to describe their mental health as “excellent.” .
A report from Gallup and the Walton Family Foundation found that “Less than half (47%) of Gen Z Americans are well-lived in life, the lowest of any generation in America today. , that percentage is much lower than that of Millennials of the same age.” Said.
The survey, released Thursday, aims to give Gen Z a voice on the important issues they face. Researchers surveyed more than 3,000 people aged 12 to 26 in April and May of this year.
“Decisions that affect public policy, learning environments, and workplaces need to consider Gen Z’s perspectives, the challenges they face, and the solutions that best meet their unique needs, rather than being about Gen Z.” says the study.
The researchers said the key indicators are measures of whether people are thriving, struggling or suffering. Respondents were asked to rate how they viewed their current and future lives and were defined as thriving if they gave high ratings in both categories.
The study found that only 41% of Gen Z members between the ages of 18 and 26 are thriving financially, while millennials at the same age are thriving at a rate of about 60%.
There is one important thing to keep in mind. That said, generational research is controversial.
Some scholars argue that generational labels are harmful and unscientific.
And earlier this year, the Pew Research Center noted that some trends that appear to be generational shifts are actually life-stage and age-based differences that can change over time.
Compared to today’s older generations, Gen Z is much more likely to report experiencing negative emotions such as stress, anxiety, and loneliness, according to a Gallup and WFF study.
The researchers also said they found “evidence that Gen Z’s self-reported mental health concerns differ from those of previous generations at the same age.” When asked about their current mental health and well-being, only 15% of Gen Z members between the ages of 18 and 26 said they felt good.
This is a significant decrease from 10 years ago, when 52% of millennials in the same age group said they were in good mental health, according to the study. And in 2004, 55% of people ages 18 to 26 (including both Millennial and Gen X respondents) reported good mental health.
Why was there such a large decline? Researchers noted that an overall decline in mental health over the past decade may be partially to blame. The study found that both Millennials and Gen
This is not the first study to focus on Gen Z’s mental health concerns.
Earlier this year, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said poor mental health remains a “significant public health problem” for adolescents, especially teenage girls.
A 2018 report from the American Psychological Association found that Gen Zers are more likely than other generations to believe their mental health is fair or poor. At the time, the association’s CEO expressed concern about the changes, but noted there could be positive signs.
Psychologist Walter Evans said: “This generation may be more interested in recognizing mental health issues than older generations.”
Generation Z’s image of their lives is far from bleak.
According to the survey, more than three-quarters of Gen Z agree that they have a great future ahead of them.
“In the face of this generation’s mental health challenges, considerable optimism persists,” the study said.
Despite this optimism, the study also notes that fewer than half of Gen Z members feel prepared for the future.
Mental health is not the only issue this study examines.
Other findings include:
• Nearly half (53%) of Gen Z students who want to pursue higher education believe they can afford it.
• 40% of Gen Z students say they are very or somewhat concerned about gun violence at school.
• “Earning enough money to live comfortably” is Gen Z’s “most frequently cited future hope,” with 69% of those surveyed listing it as their top wish.
Researchers said this study is the first report on this nationally representative group, but it will not be the last. They plan to continue surveying members of Generation Z in the future to provide more data to policy makers.