I know it'll be difficult if you haven't taken your daily dose of Ritalin, but try to pay attention for the next 60 seconds as you read this.
After being sent to the Sylvan Learning Center, having personal tutors and taking massive pills to “keep me focused,” there is obviously and utterly no other way to explain my learning patterns than to call it Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD).
Honestly, in this day and age, who doesn't have ADD? Here’s a twist to all the medication and labels we’ve been blessed with: The ADD Generation, aka Gen-Y, is the best thing to happen to this world.
For some reason, which I’m sure has been scientifically explained, humans have a burning desire and need to create a label with an explanation for everything. After that comes the immense amount of effort to control it and put it in place. We do this because of a lack of understanding, until we truly figure out what it is or how it works.
The moniker, the ADD Generation, was bestowed upon Millennials because we frequently daydream and generally “lack” an attention span. Frankly, it has offensive intentions, and we’re all tired of hearing it. It's become just another demeaning way for other generations to explain what they don't understand: who we are!
Non Gen-Yers, think about when you go on a vacation. Take the beach, for instance. What’s the best part of it?
It’s likely the fact that you can sit there, looking into that deep blue ocean or up at the sky, without one worry on your mind as you release every ounce of stress in what seems like eternal serenity. Your mind opens up and you allow it to wander with endless boundaries, without daily anxieties creeping in.
Feels amazing, right?
Now put yourself back into reality and imagine enabling yourself to do that more often. We enjoy that feeling, but our minds have adapted to doing it more frequently -- not necessarily as a means of escaping responsibilities, but more so of exercising the brain and coming up with novel ideas as we do so well. We also observe more than most people realize; we’re a creative generation.
Our stress levels are only blown out of proportion because we’re being forced to sit still and focus on what’s in front of us instead of doing what we’ve evolved to do. Engage us; don’t lecture us.
What they may not understand:
We weren't made for routine lifestyles. Given the pushes we get from every direction from social influences to those from our parents trying to mold us, it's no wonder why we’re so rebellious.
It’s not that we lack dreams or aspirations; conversely, we're overwhelmed by our own dreams and aspirations. We’re misunderstood because we want success, but we want to achieve it our own way, in a way that hasn’t been done before. We aren’t structured like our predecessors, which may freak them out, so we’ve been labeled and put into place.
Not to take away from the prominent reality that some people truly are living with disorders that may need attention, but it's unfair to label an entire generation as such.
Don’t get me wrong; Adderall is one heck of a drug. I mean, it's a “medication” that allows me to mow my lawn, dust every shelf in the house, organize my whole room and, to top it all off, write a 15-page paper within an hour.
However, it’s not always needed.
Our minds are a mess; we don’t want to sit still. Take a look back in history; weren't the most influential writers, artists and historians a little bonkers? Vincent van Gogh, for instance?
I’m thankful that many of us don’t have the capacity to listen to someone lecture for hours at a time. We’re a hands-on generation, taught through engagement and movement. Build us up in a manner in which we excel!
Side note to my fellow generation:
We don’t need to give less f*cks because we get beaten down. We need to keep fighting, keep rallying and keep rebelling; this is who we are. There is an endless amount of knowledge we can learn from our predecessors, but there are quite a few things they can learn from us, as well.
We will face the title of ADD Generation, we will make our impact on this world and it will be unlike anything anyone has ever seen before.
Photo via We Heart It