April 2, 2021

a message to the older generation: a takeaway from Caity Gallagher.

a message to the older generation: a takeaway from Caity Gallagher.

Do not call us lazy.

Your parents instilled in you that a strong work ethic equates to toiling away in misery for 10 hours per day. They taught you that jobs provide a means of survival. Loving your job took a backseat as long as you earned the almighty dollar the old-fashioned way. And that you can only begin to enjoy life in retirement, thanks to 40-plus years of slow-but-steady 401(k) investments.

If I’ve learned anything in the past few years, it’s that our brains are malleable. If we allow ourselves to, we can completely shift our ways of thinking when given new information. 

Today, I’m asking you to accept the modern way of thinking. I want you to understand us

My fellow young people and I prioritize our own well-being above all else. We recognize we must take care of ourselves in order to be our best selves. Sometimes, that means taking a longer lunch break so we can head outside for a walk in the sun. Maybe we arrive late to work after a morning yoga session.

Allow us to do those things and we promise, we won’t let you down.

On yesterday’s podcast, my friend Caity Gallagher, a mental health counselor, talked about some of her experience in this realm:

“The majority of my clients are between 18 and 35 years old. I’m 28, and anyone really a generation above me hasn't heard of self-care before, or it’s a thing that makes them uncomfortable,” she said.

She continued, “I think for so many generations it was looked down upon. People will call it self-centered, but I like to call it self-focused and self-prioritized. And when you are taking care of yourself, it makes it that much easier to do what you need to do for everyone else.”

Insert clapping emoji.

She’s got it. Self-centered is an insult. That implies selfishness and a lack of concern for other people.

No, we focus on ourselves so that we can do better and be better for the world around us. We refuse to drive ourselves into the ground; that won’t help anyone.

I know self-care is a foreign concept to you. But please, just open your minds and try to get comfortable with it. Like Caity suggests in the episode, maybe you can even try it out yourself. Go for a walk. Get a pedicure. Write down random thoughts in a notebook. Try it out and see how much fresher you feel when approaching everyday life.

Caring for yourself is not laziness. It’s the right thing to do. We recognize that, and we hope you can too.

Self-care isn’t going anywhere, and neither are we.

What are some of your favorite self-care strategies? Let us know.