I read this article this morning and found it somewhat compelling in terms of why Gen Y is unhappy. I guess a lot of it simply makes sense and not just for Gen Y. Yet it completely falls apart at the end. The advice given is not unique and I've read it often. I take issue with all of it.
1. Stay Wildly Ambitious
This is "delusional", to use a term from the author. In life, you should have goals and a sense of direction. That's good. You should also be ambitious......to an extent. Yet, remaining wildly ambitious all the time is completely nuts. You will eventually fall flat on your expectations. You simply can't be wildly ambitious at all times. I bet you know of that person too who always seems wildly ambitious. At times you think "wow, where do they get the energy?" Yet years down the road you are never surprised to see these folks burnt out or looking for the meaning of life.
Wild ambition is not a direction nor is it a goal. Think more along the lines of attainable ambitions and remember that to live life, you have to chill out every now and again. Phases of life call for limited expectations. Wild ambition for your love life, career, children and so forth will have highs and lows. Prepare to deal with them.
2. Stop Thinking That You're Special
No, don't. As soon as you stop thinking that you're special or different, you become one of the heard. As in the first point, you can't always be wildly ambitious at all times nor can you always be special. Yet, why bother if you're not going to try.
Be special. Be someone. Don't follow written rules or pre-determined paths in life. Those who achieved anything in life always thought they were "the Shit" at some point. Sure, you can often teeter on the edge of arrogance but that's a risk you should be willing to take.
3. Ignore Everyone Else
This is the worst! Don't ignore anyone. By looking around you and really "seeing" what's out there you can easily discover opportunity. Most people don't think they're special yet are wildly ambitious. Screw that...be better.
Compare yourself to others. Set a bar to get above. Without getting all philosophical, your time on this earth is limited. Make the most of it and compete. It's hard and usually it's not fair but by observing others you can often avoid making mistakes. You can also motivate yourself to be ambitious by seeing what others have achieved. No, money won't make you happy nor will many other things. Yet without seeing what the opportunities are, you can't become creative and find your own way. Never ignore anyone. If anything, just don't let them get to you.
Finally, for bonus points, if you want to understand why to give a shit, read this!