There is no shortage of literature that touches on questions of life, love and every character stereotype established within our modern-day culture.
We are constantly working to break down and understand the dynamic nature of our beliefs, our actions our place in society and all those around us.
We are, in many ways, typecast into specific roles and experiences, whether we do it to ourselves or others place us in those figurative portrayals.
While this constant dissection of events, interactions and intentions help us to better understand our own world, it can also cause us to fit ourselves into certain definitions.
Definitions may allow for clarity, but they don't always account for the grey areas and we, as human beings, are full of grey areas.
We are constantly changing and adapting and, quite frankly, we will never be strictly defined. And, I don't think we should ever want to be.
I recently came across a quote by Christopher Poindexter, which read,
"Never ever go by the book. They will want you to, but you musn't. If the lust is too strong, tear one page from a hundred books and make your own way. There is no formula for life, no equation on how to be a human being."
As I started thinking about the concept behind that statement, I found myself wondering about my experience as a Millennial woman, my own formula to life and how I hope to be understood by those who cross my path.
I can, by no means, speak for everyone, but I hope to share what my identity as a Millennial woman means to me.
This is not to act as any sort of definition, but as an innuendo of how the Millennial woman is entirely up to her own interpretation.
She understands different types of love.
Throughout our lifetimes, we will come to face many different forms of love. Some will last, some won't. Some will test us and some will forever have a home in our hearts and our memories.
Human beings, in general, inherently crave connection and I think as women, we have an incredible capacity for every type of love.
The Millennial woman is no stranger to love, whether it be unrequited, fleeting, ever-changing or long-lasting. Our understanding of love has, if anything, grown more complicated and convoluted over time.
And yet, despite this, I think we are learning to not let the experience of love, in it's many shades, scare us. We are resilient.
We have come to realize that no relationship and no connection will ever be exactly the same. There is no black and white.
The love we feel today, tomorrow and every subsequent day after is a reflection of our ability to love and to lose without ever abandoning our ability to forgive, heal, rebuild and continue to love just as fiercely as before.
No matter how we may be tested or how we may test others, we will never lose our desire or ability to share our love in every shade or form in which it occurs to us.
She won't accept any role given to her except the one she assigns herself.
We are finally entering an age in which gender roles are diminishing. Over time, women have faced no shortage of stereotypes or unfair expectations.
The Millennial woman doesn't abide by a specific role because we are all entirely different. We embrace the paths we make for ourselves instead of the ones that might be assumed for us.
Some of us will be breadwinners and some of us will be homemakers. Some of us will be adventurers, politicians, artists, engineers and everything in-between. There is no right or wrong role for us.
She is strong, independent and isn't afraid to show her confidence.
There have been many instances when the display of strength or independence by a woman was seen as a threat or an undesirable trait.
If you ask me, that concept is entirely antiquated within the Millennial age.
Strength, independence and confidence are never things to apologize for — man or woman. Our individuality is the essence that applies meaning to our lives, and we should be entirely proud of that.
We will pursue our independence, develop our strengths and exhibit our confidence as we see fit, without fear of societal retaliation, because the Millennial woman is a force with which to be reckoned.
I don't mean in the bra-burning, stereotypical feminist way, but in the way of understanding, equality, the self and independence. Strength comes in many forms and we all have it within us in various representations.
She appreciates intelligence and eloquence, and those who can appreciate hers.
There is no greater compliment than the notice of intelligence and ability, and the Millennial woman is by no means just a pretty face.
She is a woman who isn't afraid to showcase her mind and be recognized for it.
Beyond all the talk of the hook-up culture and convoluted cycles of dating and psychological games, I believe there is growing appreciation and understanding of the importance of intellectual connection: a sharp mind and a literate tongue.
I think it is this distinction that we crave and relish, and that will separate the Millennial women from the girls.
We are hungry for knowledge, captivating conversation, intellectual growth and most importantly, people who can embrace and challenge us along the way.
She isn't victim to the pressure of any traditional timeline, but instead, makes her own.
We are all aware of the various timelines of life and the pressures associated with them.
Quite frankly, the world today is constantly changing, and as a result, our lives rarely follow strict schedules according to assumed traditions.
The Millennial woman will not abide by any strict regulation because she creates her own path.
Some of us may go school in our 20s, some later on. Some of us will get married early, some of us will marry later and some of us may not marry at all.
Some of us will work a few jobs throughout our lives and some of us will work many. Some of us will travel, some of us will get lost and we will all, somehow, find ourselves.
There is no need to compare timelines because we all live entirely different lives. These things will progress differently for each of us.
The Millennial woman can, instead, have faith in the process and her own progression through each day and each milestone, at her own chosen speed and order.
There is no exact formula for life and no right or wrong timeline. We forge our own ways.
She embraces her sexuality.
As I have said before, sexuality is a power that we all have.
The Millennial woman has learned to look past the double standards we have faced in order to realize that her individual sexuality is something to be embraced and celebrated.
The concept of sex and sexuality is never stagnant; it presents a different meaning to each woman and man, but I don't think we have a right to place stark judgment on those differences.
We, as women, are sexual creatures. We will all pursue and embrace our sexuality in different ways, but that is part of the beauty of it all.
We should never feel the need to hide this part of ourselves or apologize for our sexuality, as it plays a critical role in our identity.
She does not seek validation.
"The woman who does not require validation from anyone is the most feared individual on the planet." — Mohadesa Najumi.
We are not waiting for anyone's approval, validation or permission. We will create our lives and futures as we see fit, not according to someone else's rules.
Ultimately, it's okay to live a life not everyone will understand, so long as it's the life you want to live.
As Christopher Poindexter put it, we are tearing pages from a hundred different books as we create our own way in the Millennial world.
Because the Millennial woman is whoever she wants to be.