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Archive for the ‘“Narcissistic” millenials’ Category

(Or Mudslinging Using Psychological Jargon)Whenever I hear the word “narcissistic” I get suspicious because the term is so often misused. Such was the case in the recent 60 Minutes program on the work ethic (or lack of it) among the newest generation in the workforce, dubbed “the Millenials.” This newest generation of workers is befuddling employers because of their interest in friendships and quality of life over work for the sake of advancement. Both of those traits—emphasis on friendship and lack of interest in status—are  distinctly non-narcissistic. True narcissism includes  difficulty valuing personal relationships and intimacy—friends are there mostly to manipulate. True narcissism also involves a huge sense of entitlement to advancement, not indifference to it.  It appears to me that the Millenials are also befuddling employers because rough management doesn’t work with them: they’ll just leave and find a place where they’re treated better. In this case, it is the employers who got away with punitive, threatening, demanding and, yes, narcissistic behavior in the past…not the Millenials who simply refuse to be manipulated in that way.  So contrary to a worsened state of narcissism in this new generation of workers, it appears to me to be a dramatic reduction in narcissism. Perhaps it’s exactly the direction we need to antidote the true narcissism that has often reigned in American business and government in particular the over-materialism of American society as a whole. And maybe that use of the word “narcissistic” in regard to the Millenials was mostly a hostile response from a system under the gun to change. 

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