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It may surprise you to learn that today’s millennial generation are at, or reaching, middle age. The term generally applies to those born between 1981-1996, making the oldest millennials 41. Unfortunately for many of this group, the Great Recession, housing affordability, and student debt combined to stunt their aspirations. By contrast, many of those in the often-overlooked Generation X, aged between 42-57, are hitting their strides. Access to financial, social, and political capital helps them in ways their younger associates can only dream of. Why Generation X is having a moment? This is how:
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Why Generation X is having a moment
1. Financial benefits
Hitting 50 is a milestone for many reasons, some of which are surprisingly positive and involve money. For example, one benefit is that those over 50 have the option to use whole of life insurance. This special insurance can pay out to your beneficiaries regardless of when you die after an exclusion period, provided you keep up the premiums. And, as many over 50s can testify, health issues can rear their ugly heads more frequently. Fortunately, this cover is given without needing medical information, and with only limited lifestyle information, such as whether the applicant smokes.
It’s not for everyone though. Get over 50s life insurance quotes tailored to you before deciding.
2. Social advantages for Gen X
Generation X became known as “the middle child” because they fit between baby-boomers and millennials. This means that they can be forgotten in public discussion. But, as the recruitment consultants Tate note, being in the middle has its advantages. In its report, “Your quick guide to: Working with Generation X” the company notes that, “Generation X are often seen as the balance between Generation Y and Boomers at polar ends of the spectrum.”
This makes Generation X members the natural fit for important social roles involving conflict resolution, mediation, and justice between conflicting groups. All things which middle children successfully navigate every day.
3. Political bonus
It is no coincidence that many in Generation X are currently in positions of power. Those in this age group have enough experience to perform complex roles, sufficient gravitas to command respect, and the opportunity to replace the outgoing generations of “baby boomers” and older people in “the greatest generation”. But this marriage of political, economic, and social benefits will only centre around Gen X for a short period. Already, disruptors in younger generations (think of people like Greta Thunberg and her Generation Z cohort) are wielding tremendous political power to upend traditional views. For this reason, it is important for Generation X people to take the lead while being responsive to progressive views and empathetic to the conservatism of older generations. Again, the middle child skillset will come in handy.
For children, getting older is fun and exciting. For the rest of us, not so much. But, knowing our place in the world, and how we can make the best use of our skills to help those around us, helps. The middle children in Generation X are at the peak of their powers.