In a world that often associates youth with beauty, success, and vitality, it’s crucial to identify the limiting notions that constrain millennial women as they grow older. But they also have the power to redefine what it means to age gracefully and to embrace the wisdom and experiences that come with each passing year instead of agonizing over what society may believe for them.
Let’s cast aside the misconceptions that suggest our worth is tied solely to our youth. It’s so important to challenge these limiting beliefs to nurture self-acceptance, embrace personal growth, and redefine the narrative around aging. Here, we’ll delve into the common limiting notions about aging for millennial women to release so they can encourage a new and empowering narrative that celebrates every chapter of their lives.
Slowing Down Time
Society and social media often place significant emphasis on looking young for as long as possible, leading to the misconception that age diminishes beauty and attractiveness. This narrative can make millennial women feel anxious and pressured to maintain a certain level of youthful appearance and can create unhealthy and sometimes addictive behaviors. Botox, plumpers, augmentations, lifts, implants for what’s lacking, lipo for what’s in surplus. The cosmetic options are endless to change our appearance, both temporarily and permanently.
But as we’ve seen recently with 81-year-old Martha Stewart gracing the cover of Sports Illustrated, age really is just a number. Women are defying the status quo and flaunting their ageless power well past the mid-life point (which apparently begins around age 40, by the way). Jennifer Lopez went full monte last year for a product campaign on her 53rd birthday and is arguably more stunning now than she was as a 23-year-old Fly Girl. Maturity is sexy! Don’t let anyone convince you otherwise.
Nailing Success The First Time Around
There is a societal expectation that by a certain age, millennial women should have achieved specific career milestones or have a clear path to professional success. Deviating from these expectations can lead to feelings of inadequacy or failure, as though they’ve fallen behind somehow. The truth is, it takes some women longer to figure out what fans their career fire and there’s no law saying that degree you worked so hard for is the ONLY path to success.
After retiring from a semi-pro women’s football league with accolades like “Team Captain” and “MVP,” Lori Locust launched into coaching. She worked her way up through the ranks of professional football and in 2021, was part of the first female coaching team to win a Superbowl at the young age of 57. Lori wasn’t unsuccessful before winning a Superbowl. Her original plan to play football was sidelined by an injury that ultimately led her to the Big Game. Determining what success actually means to you is an empowering and enlightening reminder that you’re on your own journey, in your own time, and you need no one else’s approval to redefine success for you.
The Biological Clock is Ticking… But About That Bank Account…
Millennial women may feel pressured to get married and start a family by a certain age, which can be incredibly conflicting for those who’ve chosen to prioritize other areas of their lives like careers, traveling, and finances. Having children in our 20s and 30s has been the norm for decades of generations but there seems to be a shift happening.
The birthrate in the US has been steadily declining since 2008 – about the same time the youngest millennial women were turning 27 and experiencing their first recession as adults. The estimated annual cost of raising a child has jumped from $12k-$18k in 2015 to $14k-$34k in 2023, causing many millennial women to wait until later in life to start families – if at all. And that’s ok!
So, don’t sweat the proverbial ticking clock, familial pressures, or societal expectations. Hilary Swank gave birth earlier this year to twins at age 48 and Janet Jackson was 50 when she had her son!
As millennial women boldly challenge the traditional expectations imposed on them, more and more are refusing to be restricted by age-related stereotypes that dictate how they should look, behave, or achieve their goals. Instead, they’re embracing a new mindset that acknowledges the limitless possibilities that come with each stage of life and living it on their terms. After all, “life is a journey, not a destination.”