Millennials Anxious Now, Optimistic About Future

Despite a failing economy, employment woes and countless other concerns, a key segment of Millennials, people born between 1980 and 1990, remain confident about what 2009 will have in store for them. According to an omnibus survey conducted by StrategyOne on behalf of Pepsi, four out of five Millennials are hopeful about the future as the New Year approaches, and nearly all surveyed (95%) agree that it is important for them to maintain a positive outlook on life.

Lisa Orrell, generation relations expert and author of Millennials Incorporated, says "Children of the ‘80s and ‘90s inherently feel a strong sense of optimism in the future and their ability to shape it. This age group feels refreshingly unencumbered by history or tradition, a feeling that they can accomplish anything they resolve to achieve."

According to the survey, Millennials spend more time enjoying life than worrying about it and this group is most optimistic about their overall well-being and relationships with friends and family. Other findings include:

  • 74% find that supporting causes make them feel more optimistic
  • 77% of Millennials report having a strong sense of optimism about their careers
  • 95% of Millennials make positive associations when they think of the word "change," associating it with "progress" (78%), "hope" (77%) and "excitement" (72%)
  • 67% of Millennials say that the election of Barack Obama is making them feel optimistic about the future of the country

"Millennials are gearing up to make 2009 their year... " Orrell concludes,

Those feeling "excited" about the future include:

  • 57% of Millennials 49% of Gen Xers
  • 38% of Baby Boomers
  • 27% of Post-War Americans

Though the Millennial generation is more likely than their older counterparts to say they feel "excited" about the future, they are also more apt to feel "nervous" and "stressed" right now, according to a survey conducted by StrategyOne on behalf of Pepsi.

Positive and Negative Emotions Expressed by Millenials About the Future

Feeling

% of Millenials

Hopeful

81%

Optimistic

65

Confident

57

Excited

57

Concerned

72

Nervous

56

Stressed

42

Pessimistic

26

Source: Pepsi Optimism Project Survey, 2008

The study also found that even though 95% of Millennials say it's important to maintain a positive outlook on life and none reported a long-term negative outlook, 56% of Millennials feel anxious about their lives now, compared with 43% of Generation Xers, 51% of Baby Boomers and 36% of Post-War Americans.

Though 71% of the Millennials spend more time enjoying life than worrying about the future, they do so slightly less than the general population (78%), the study found. Despite this 68% of Millennials say that they are most optimistic about their long-term future, compared with 65% of Americans.

Expectation of Greater Things to Come

Time Frame

% of Millenials

Within next 3 months

14%

Next 4 to 12 months

12

Over a year

68

All equally

6

Source: Pepsi Optimism Project Survey, 2008

While 72% of  Millennials report feeling concerned about the future, 97% are optimistic about some personal aspect of their lives. These levels are in line with the 79% of Americans who are concerned about the future and 98% who are optimistic about their personal lives.

Millennials are most optimistic about their overall well-being (84%) and their relationships with family and friends (81%), and are significantly more likely than their older counterparts to be optimistic about their careers (77%, vs. 66% of Gen Xers, 59% of Baby Boomers and 22% of Post-War Americans).

Factors About  Which Millenials Express Optimisim

Factor

% of Millenials

Personal relationship

89%

Health and well-being

87

Family and friends relationship

81

Career

77

Finances

64

Romantic relationship

61

Source: Pepsi Optimism Project Survey, 2008

Millennials are more likely than their older counterparts to report that being more social:

  • Millennials... 71%
  • Gen Xers... 59%
  • Baby Boomers... 68%
  • Post-War Americans...61%

Millenials feel that shopping tends to make them feel more optimistic:

  • Millennials... 38%
  • Gen Xers... 28%
  • Baby Boomers... 30%
  • Post War Americans... 32%

For more information about the study, please visit Pepsico here.

 

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1 comment about "Millennials Anxious Now, Optimistic About Future".
  1. Jeff Harrison , December 31, 2008 at 1:13 p.m.

    Finally someone reporting some positive news! Thank you