When we hear the word youth, what comes to our mind is generally someone between the ages of 15 and 30 who is full of confidence, full of life, and ready to face all of life’s difficulties. But are we getting any closer to reality, and are our preconceptions about today’s youth, correct?
These are the kinds of questions that everyone has.
Youth is regarded as the peak period of one’s life. After passing through your adolescent years, when you go through a lot of biological, emotional, and social changes, and before entering adulthood, when you go through a lot of emotional and physical maturation and have a lot of responsibilities, you get to enjoy your youth.
However, today’s youth is in a vulnerable position. Youth are anxious and restless as a result of their ambition, goals, competition, identity, and comparison.
We live in a very competitive environment, and the desire to excel at everything we do has been wired into our brains from birth. Our entire childhood has been transformed into a battleground, similar to what we see in games like Combat Mortals and PUBG, where only the fittest survive. Children’s happiness and a carefree attitude have been suppressed, and they are being turned into beings whose only goal is to be the best in the market. Thank goodness I was born in the 1990s since I enjoyed my fair share of happiness as a child. This is creating a vast void in which a person cannot rely on his past for good carefree memories, nor are they contented and happy with the current situation.
Because they are dissatisfied with themselves and their current circumstances, they often seek solace in unhealthy habits such as smoking, drinking, and even started doing drugs. Many people have mental health problems. As per reports, in India, around 20 crore people suffer from mental health problems. People are growing more introverted and keeping things to themselves. This previous year contributed to an already complicated situation. Even when this pressure goes out of hand, people take their own lives.
So, what is the focus of a modern youth’s life—all it’s about the money? We have been misled into equating success, fame, and happiness with money. and our success is time-limited. I’ve been told since I was a child that a successful person graduates by the age of 21, becomes successful in his job by the age of 25, marries by the age of 27, and has a family by the age of 30, and anything that deviates from this plan is something that will keep you from achieving success. But is success something that can be written out on sheets, or life happens as planned? The only constant is that LIFE IS UNPREDICTABLE. And the other major issue that the youth deals with is “LOG KYA KAHENGE”. Society has also not been very kind to the people. The societal pressures are too high to handle.
All of this is putting a lot of mental pressure and stress on the youth, impacting their efficiency and progress. The surprising fact is that India has the world’s greatest youth population. Our workforce is massive, and with so many young people, one would expect the country’s growth graph to explode, but the reality is far from that.
It is high time for us to start making changes to our way of thinking and perceptions. As a society, as parents, and as peers, we should become each other’s pillars. We should all work together to encourage the youth to make the best use of their energy and skills. We should be more supportive of their decisions regarding their careers, lifestyle, and companions. We have had a judgmental attitude toward others for a long time. Harassing them for their decisions, making them feel bad about their failings. Also, I want people to understand that failing at something is normal; you are not born skilled, and when you learn something, it is difficult, and some people give up; this is fine; it does not imply you are not on par with other people. We have made failure a taboo, and our youth are so afraid of it that they won’t even try new things or pursue their passion. Comparison and downgrading people have a drastic effect on their self-esteem. Mental health should be prioritized. The mantra that I deeply believe in is “jersey aur jeene do” let the young people make their own choices, let them fail, let them explore the world with their eyes. Be a guiding force for them and not a hindrance in their growth.