According to a recent survey by healthcare company Cigna, Gen Z is the loneliest generation, followed by millennials. Gen Z has a loneliness rating of 48.3 and Millennials a rating of 45.3. This survey was conducted among more than 20,000 Americans who are 18 years of age and older.
The survey has some interesting highlights. First, social media use alone is not a predictor of loneliness. Second, students have higher levels of loneliness than retirees. After all, there isn’t much of a difference between men and women, and not much of a racial difference, when it comes to average loneliness scores. The survey also shows that people who are less lonely are more likely to have regular personal interactions, are generally in good physical and mental health, have found balance in their daily activities, and are busy.
Research also suggests that levels of personal interaction, physical and mental wellbeing, and life balance are more likely to predict loneliness than social media use. For example, respondents who were defined as very heavy users of social media had a loneliness score of 43.5 compared to those who never used social media, had a loneliness score of 41.7.
Unfortunately, most young Americans feel like they have to be kept busy all the time. Otherwise, they will feel like they are falling behind others and will not be successful. Hence, they spend work-related time with their peers and this is usually not high quality time. As a result, they don’t get to know each other well enough to be real friends.
Worst of all, when these young adults find time to rest or relax, they usually spend that time on their phones checking their social media or browsing the internet. Instead, when they call a friend to go out in their spare time or go to the gym to work out, they feel guilty for spending too much time on leisure and not working hard enough like others.
To prevent this loneliness, parents should supervise their children and encourage them to get enough sleep, balance work and life, make time for activities such as going to the movies, going to a restaurant, or shopping with friends, and traveling to one Exercise nearby to refresh your mind or anything that allows them to get away from their coursework. Periods of this nature allow these young adults to rest and recharge. This allows them to work smarter and longer.