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Friday, Oct. 31, 2014

Are you in your 20s and feeling old? That's fine — 20 is the new 40

Compiled by Herb Scribner, Deseret News National Edition

Published: Wed, Sept. 3 3:50 p.m. MDT

 You don't have to wait until you're 40 to start doing 40-year-old things. In fact, a lot of the practices may start happening in your 20s.

You don't have to wait until you're 40 to start doing 40-year-old things. In fact, a lot of the practices may start happening in your 20s.

(Monkey Business Images Ltd, Getty Images)

Don’t fret about how old you feel — 20 is so the new 40.

Or, at least, that’s what The Telegraph’s Rachel Dove wrote in her recent piece, which said that today’s millennials are acting a lot older than they actually are. According to Dove, young people are acting more like their parents than people previously thought.

“Though we are more socially liberal and accepting than previous generations when it comes to things such as gay marriage and euthanasia,” Dove wrote, “we are likely to be more politically right-wing than our parents or grandparents were at the same age.”

It’s a common-held belief that people get more conservative with age and that young people tend to be more liberal. Millennials seem to be bucking that trend. In fact, 53 percent of millenials want political candidates who are socially liberal and fiscally conservative, according to a report by Reason-Rupe.

But politics aside, millennials are following older practices despite their young age. Here are 11 things that millennials are doing now that make 20 the new 40.

Young people are living an easier lifestyle

It’s the prime of your life. Go out, party and celebrate every day like it’s your last (#YOLO). That’s what millennials are prone to hearing, but it isn’t what they’re actually doing. A recent study by NPD Group found that 75 percent of millennials are using their TVs for Netflix, YouTube and other application programs to watch television.

But it’s not just watching — they’re binge watching (which is usually watching three or four episodes in a row of a specific TV show). According to a study by Miner & Co. Studio, 61 percent of millennials are frequent binge watchers of television shows — 17 percent of whom binge watch on a daily basis. So instead of going out and living each day, it seems the majority of American millennials are hanging out at home and watching Netflix.

Young people are reading the news

It’s no secret many Americans get their news from Facebook. And with a recent survey finding that the best way to reach millennials is to send things out on social media, the perception would be that millennials are getting all, or most, of their news from social media.

Wrong. A study from ComScore found that American millennials are reading the news from a variety of sources, with BuzzFeed, The New York Times, Gawker, Complex and The Wall Street Journal topping the list. Seems millennials are still sucking up their news from traditional publications, even if the platform is different.

Millennials are traveling

One of the biggest positives of retirement — and something that retirees are seeking out more and more when they reach retirement age — is traveling. As Forbes’ Deborah L. Jacobs wrote back in March of this year, retirees are saving up and living out their dreams by traveling. But they’re not the only ones. Millennials may also be the new face of travel.

According to The Boston Consulting Group’s recent survey, millennials are more interested in traveling than any other demographic. This has led to Americans changing what travel means, too. It’s not always about seeing new places, but it’s also about switching the way people think about their work and life, The Atlantic’s Amanda Machado wrote back in June.

“Faced with a lack of reliable, long-term employment options, a number of millennials are also using travel to take a break from job-searching and re-evaluate what to do next,” Machado wrote.

Millennials are thinking of the future more than normal

It’s common practice to prepare for your future, right? Well, millennials are taking it to an entirely new level. According to the Pew Research Center, millennials can remember all the economic troubles they’ve faced since the Great Recession in the last decade, and are thus preparing for a future where they may have to work longer, well into their later years.

Young people want to get married

Forget what you’ve heard about this so-called “hook-up culture.” Millennials are actually not all that different from previous generations, according to a 20-year study. Young people are still interested in getting married, listing it as one of their life goals. According to the Pew Research Center, 26 percent of American millennials are married — though 69 percent of them want to get married.

Millennials are interested in religion

Sure, less young people may be interested in religious organizations (about one in four are unaffiliated), but the number of millennials that have religious beliefs is comparable to previous generations, according to the Pew Research Center.

Young people are responsible for their homes

Millennials can afford to buy houses, they’re just holding off on doing it, according to recent research reported on by Al Jazeera. Most millennials are electing to live with their parents as a way to save on spending and keep a comfortable lifestyle, even though they could buy their own homes. And they’re waiting until later in life — a time when they have the capability to take care of their place, USA Today reported. In fact, millennials are an integral part of the house-buying market, and they have their own unique ideas about what that home should be like and how it’ll appear to others.

Millennials respect their elders

It’s common practice to listen to your elders. After all, there have been noted benefits to listening to those who are older. And millennials are fine with doing that. Side-stepping the common stereotype that young people are cocky and know everything, millennials are actually open to change and listening to those who have advice for them, the Pew Research Center reported.

Coffee is key for young people

In the last year, 78 percent of American millennials have consumed coffee, according to a study by the National Coffee Association (the NCA). It’s the drink of choice. Millennials have been the subject of advertising for coffee companies and have been known to give restaurants a spring of increased sales for ordering the coffee. But who is still king of the coffee world? It seems older people — 85 percent of Generation Xers, 86 percent of baby boomers and 90 percent of older people — are more interested in having coffee, according to the NCA’s study.

Millennials care a lot about their careers

Getting out of college and finding a job is only the first step for young people. For millennials, climbing up the ladder at work is a top priority. In fact, NBC News reported that millennials are more likely to take credit for someone else’s work in order to get ahead than any other generation.

Because there isn’t confidence in the job market anymore, millennials are putting a heavy emphasis on keeping their jobs and finding a way to control their financial future, Forbes reported. But how is this an older person ideal? Well, it seems the elderly are delaying retirement so that they can change their career or even start up a new business, according to The Guardian.

Young people are having more life crises

The midlife crisis — it’s sometimes inescapable. But it seems young people are increasingly facing quarter-life crises. With graduation demands in college, a less than favorable job market and increased social issues, American youngsters are suffering from depression and worry younger than their parents might have, MSN News reported.

“Like the midlife crisis, the quarter-life crisis is a response to reaching ‘a turning point in life,’ explained Alexandra Robbins, an author credited with popularizing the term in the early 2000s,” reported MSN News.

But just in case you’re an older person reading this list ...

… you should know you’re going to be making more money than millennials. So if you’re worried that millennials are playing the roles you thought old age would bring you, just know you’re still racking in the dough.

Email: hscribner@deseretdigital.com, Twitter: @herbscribner

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1. Gildas
LOGAN, UT,
Sept. 4, 2014

It sounds as though the rising generation are adapting to the continuing poor economic climate with considerable worldly wisdom.

One thing that is disappointing is that, even though 69% or thereabouts still expect to get married, it was not all that long ago that marriage was the expectation of almost everyone, and that related to "traditional" marriage, the only kind there was before the recent assault on the English language and Dictionary.

Still it's all about individuals, as it always has been, and that means for me that there will be a continued production of excellent young adults, perhaps some very exceptional ones, among and above the generality of younger people. I saw a marked drop in standards among many of us in the late Sixties with its drug culture and sexual "revolution", and many good people emerging from, having bypassed or learned hard lessons from, that.