So you got a medal for coming in last? No wonder you feel bad about yourself. It turns out accomplishment builds self-esteem, not participation trophies.
In an interview that’s gone viral, author and motivational speaker Simon Sinek nails the four main reasons for Millennial unhappiness: poor parenting, social media, impatience and environment.
“Who was it that was standing against the awards for last place?” Glenn asked on his radio program Monday.
Why conservatives, thank you very much.
Working hard to overcome challenges makes you feel capable and smart. The other failed strategies, combined with the overwhelming presence of social media, make you feel entitled, unhappy and disconnected.
Listen to this segment from The Glenn Beck Program:
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Below is a rush transcript of this segment, it might contain errors:
GLENN: Welcome to the program. So glad that you’re here. Let’s go with Simon Sinek in an interview that he did about millennials, in front of a crowd about, what is — what is really happening with millennials? And how do we reach out to millennials? What do we need to do to get them truly engaged? Because there is a sense of entitlement there. Listen.
SIMON: The generation that we call the millennials, too many of them grew up subject to — not my words — failed parenting strategies. You know, where, for example, they were told that they were especially all the time. They were told that they could have anything they want in life, just because they want it, right?
They were told — some of them got into honors classes, not because they deserved it, but because their parents complained. And some of them got A’s, not because they earned them, but because the teachers didn’t want to deal with the parents.
GLENN: Can we stop for a second?
Who’s — where did that failed parenting strategy come from? Let me reverse that: Who was it that was standing against the awards for last place?
PAT: Oh, conservatives.
GLENN: Conservatives were all saying —
PAT: Yeah, we begged you not to.
GLENN: “This is not going to work. This is not going to work.”
PAT: My gosh, at the top of our lungs, we were screaming that.
GLENN: Right. Right.
So I think the first thing, we just need to put on the chalkboard, just point number one: Not all of America was behind this —
PAT: In no way would Simon recognize that. But it’s a fact.
GLENN: I think he would. I think he would.
PAT: I don’t think he would, but we should ask him.
STU: And to back Simon with the stats on that, in 1940, 14.9 percent of college grades were A’s. 14.9 percent. Today it’s 45.3 percent.
PAT: Yeah, it’s even worse in the Ivy League schools. Even worse.
GLENN: They’re that much smarter.
STU: They’re that much smarter, right.
Think about that, when he talks about people achieving these things without achieving them, I mean, there’s no way — if it’s true that they’re that much smarter, then the classes should be harder. You shouldn’t be giving half the grades an entire — not just one school or one class, all of college, half of them are A’s.
PAT: And we should have the greatest school system in the world year in and year out.
GLENN: In the world. And it doesn’t happen that way.
Anyway, he goes on to diagnose the problem.
SIMON: Participation medals. You got a medal for coming in last, right? Which the science we know is pretty clear, which it devalues the medal and the reward for those who actually work hard. And that actually makes the person who comes in last feel embarrassed because they know they don’t deserve it. So it actually makes them feel worse. Right?
SIMON: So you take this group of people. And they graduate school, and they get a job. And they’re thrust into the real world.
And in an instant, they find out they’re not special. Their moms can’t get them a promotion. That you get nothing for coming in last.
And, by the way, you can’t just have it because you want it. Right?
And in an instant, their entire self-image is shattered. And so you have an entire generation that’s growing up with lower self-esteem than previous generation. The other problem, to compound it is we’re growing up in a Facebook, Instagram world. In other words, we’re good at putting filters on things. We’re good at showing people that life is amazing, even though I’m depressed. Right?
GLENN: Okay. Stop for a second. Notice that the first problem — he wrapped all of that — failed parenting strategies. He wrapped that up with the diagnosis of what? What does he say that all led to? This is such a huge, huge problem. What does he say?
PAT: Social media.
GLENN: No. Uh-uh. That’s point number two.
PAT: Looking for —
GLENN: He said the lowest self-esteem on record.
STU: Which is crazy. Because it seems every strategy today is to make them have higher self-esteem. But it fails.
GLENN: But it fails. Because you’re not having to actually accomplish anything.
PAT: Because it’s artificial. It’s artificial. You can’t tell somebody they’re great if they’re not.
GLENN: They know it.
STU: That’s why we can’t handle Jeffy.
JEFFY: Good to have you back, boy.
GLENN: When they’re on the team and they know that nobody is really listening to me. I’m not — I’m just on this team for whatever reason. I’ve got pictures of the boss.
GLENN: People know, “I’m not making a difference. Nothing I do is really helping anything.” When you have that, low self-esteem kicks in. They want — I hear this from employee after employee after employee. I just want to do something that makes a difference.
So when they’re saying low self-esteem and when millennials say, “I want to make a difference,” what they’re saying is, “I have low self-esteem. I have to do something that means something.” This is what is propelling them, I believe, in their boots on the ground kind of activities, where they say, I don’t want to just talk about it. I want to go out and do it.
They’ve heard the talk about how special they are their whole life. They know they’re not. They know that’s a lie. And because of that, they have low self-esteem.
So now they’re really motivated to stop talking about it and go actually do it, but getting there is the hard part.
SIMON: Everybody sounds tough, and everybody sounds like they got it all figured out. And the reality is, there’s very little toughness, and most people don’t have it figured out.
And so when the more senior people say, “Well, what should we do?” They sound like, “This is what you got to do.” And they have no clue.
So you have an entire generation growing up lower self-esteem than previous generations, right? Through no fault of their own. Through no fault of their own. They were dealt a bad hand, right?
Now, let’s add in technology. We know that engagement with social media and our cell phone phones releases a chemical called dopamine. That’s why when you get a text: It feels good. Right?
So we’ve all had it where you’re feeling a little bit down or feeling a bit lonely. And so you send out ten texts to ten friends. You know, hi, hi, hi, hi. Because it feels good when you get a response, right? Right?
It’s why we count the likes. It’s why we go back ten times — and if it’s going — if my Instagram is growing slower, did I do something wrong? Do they not like me anymore?
The trauma for young kids to be unfriended. Right? Because we know when you get it, you get a hit of dopamine, which feels good. It’s why we like it. It’s why we keep going back to it.
Dopamine is the exact same chemical that makes us feel good when we smoke, when we drink, and when we gamble.
In other words, it’s highly, highly addictive. Right?
We have age restrictions on smoking, gambling, and alcohol. And we have no age restrictions on social media and cell phones, which is the equivalent of opening up the liquor cabinet and saying to our teenagers, “Hey, by the way, this adolescence thing, if it gets you down…”
But that’s basically what’s happening. That’s basically what’s happening. Right? That’s basically what happened. You have an entire generation that has access to an addictive, numbing chemical called dopamine, through social media and cell phones as they’re going through the high stress of adolescence. Why is this important?
Almost every alcoholic discovered alcohol when they were teenagers. When we were very, very young, the only approval we need is the approval of our parents. And as we go through adolescence, we make this transition where we now need the approval of our peers.
Very frustrating for our parents, very important for us. It allows us to acculturate outside of our immediate families into the border tribe. Right?
It’s a highly, highly stressful and anxious period of our life, and we’re supposed to learn to rely on our friends.
Some people, quite by accident, discover alcohol and numbing effects of dopamine to help them copy with the stresses and anxieties of adolescence. Unfortunately, that becomes hard-wired in their brains. And for the rest of their lives, when they suffer significant stress, they will turn to a person. They will turn to the bottle: Social stress, financial stress, career stress. That’s pretty much the primary reasons why an alcoholic drinks, right?
What’s happening is, because we’re allowing unfettered access to these dopamine-producing devices and media, basically it’s becoming hardwired.
And what we’re seeing is, as they grow older, they — too many kids don’t know how to form deep, meaningful relationships. Their words, not mine.
GLENN: Okay. Stop. Stop.
GLENN: Jeffy say it. Where am I taking that?
JEFFY: Go ahead, Glenn. It’s all you.
GLENN: That is exactly — this — this adds fuel to the fire of my concern about gaming the way it’s being done with virtual reality and what is coming. It is — it is giving you a full — soon, a full sensory gratification. You will get what you — what you want.
JEFFY: No need for any other human.
GLENN: No need for human interaction.
PAT: Yeah. As soon as the —
GLENN: And they won’t know how to do it.
PAT: As soon as the VR thing is perfected, it will be the artificial thing they’re looking for. But it’s just that, it’s artificial.
GLENN: So what do — how do we not become Japan? Seriously, Japan, they can’t get people to breed. They cannot get people to have sex with one another.
Now, I don’t know what weird stuff is happening in Japan that stops that, but it’s not happening in Japan. And they’re — there won’t be any Japanese people left, you know, in 100 years.
PAT: Yeah, their replacement rate, is it negative now?
GLENN: It can’t be negative.
PAT: It’s almost zero. But it certainly — it’s at an unhealthy level for sure.
PAT: It’s at an extinction rate.
GLENN: Yeah, it’s past the point of no return.
GLENN: So when we — now we’re encouraging people not to have relationships.
Now, Saturday, I heard my son — he was in the kitchen. I was in the kitchen. And he was playing, I don’t know, Minecraft or something. And he was playing it with two friends together, and they each had boxes up on the — you know, up on the screen.
GLENN: They were two girls that he was playing them with. Who were his friends.
And I saw normal interaction. I was listening to them while I was working in the kitchen and listening to them. And it sounded like absolute normal interaction. So what’s the problem with that?
I’m trying to diffuse myself from being so phobic about that. He seems to have normal interaction. It’s just different. It’s just not —
PAT: Third person.
GLENN: But he’s still looking at them.
PAT: Yeah. Uh-huh.
STU: I think just, what is normal interaction, changes. It’s something we talked about with going to a concert. You go to a concert and all you see are phones. And every person like me or older says the same thing: Why don’t you experience the freaking show you paid for instead of filming it?
JEFFY: That is it.
STU: But that is how they experience the show. They don’t experience the show by looking at the show. They experience the show by holding up their phone and recording it so they can post it later. That is their experience at a concert.
PAT: And some artists are starting to push back against that. Right? Was it Adele?
JEFFY: Yeah. She’s hollered at her audience before.
PAT: “Would you put the phone down and just watch the show — enjoy the show. Experience the show.”
JEFFY: I would say: You cash the check, I’ll watch it any way I want. Sing.
PAT: Yeah. Yeah.
GLENN: I will tell you though that it happens all the time. When I meet people, we’ll go out places — there’s one person, if we’re in a group, there’s one person who I never actually interact with — usually a parent standing there with a phone, and they’re only talking to me through the phone or talking to their child through the phone stop we never make eye contact. And I always feel bad because I feel like they were ripped off.
PAT: Yeah, they missed it. They missed it.
GLENN: They never had that personal connection. They did through the phone.
PAT: But we’ll get to experience it later, Glenn.
GLENN: I know. It’s weird. It’s weird.
PAT: That is weird.
GLENN: Now, this.
Last week, we talked about the coastal buffers and how they weaken hurricanes at landfall. Now scientists are calling this a lucky phenomena. Scientists are discovering how incredibly prepared Mother Nature is for dealing with natural disasters.
By the way, do you remember — we have to play this. The — what’s her name from — in Congress from California that said the Sierra Nevada is soon — like seven years or ten years — she said this about ten years ago. Won’t have snow.
PAT: Is that Boxer?
GLENN: Yeah, it was Barbara Boxer. We have to find that. Because they’re about to have 20 feet of snow from the last week and a half. I think they had 3 feet drop on them yesterday alone.
Anyway, Mother Nature is prepared for disasters. If you’re caught in a natural disaster like a hurricane or some other emergency, are you prepared to feed your family? My Patriot Supply is there right now with a 72-hour emergency food kit.
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You see a snowflake, and you realize, “Got to get the milk.” Because I’ve got nothing in my house. 72-hour emergency food kit right now. Ten dollars per family member for three days. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner. And all the snacks and the drinks and everything else. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner for three days, $10. 800-200-9031. 800-200-9031. Save over 60 percent right now. Ten dollars. Family of four, for 40 bucks. PreparewithGlenn.com. That’s preparewithGlenn.com.
(OUT AT 8:23AM)
GLENN: So we’ve been listening to Simon Sinek talk about the problem that the millennials face. And really, not by their fault. They were raised with bad parenting strategies that many of us have fought against for a long time, and now we realize, “Oh, gee, everybody gets a trophy isn’t healthy for society.” And so now, how do we get out of this? You want to go to his solution?
GLENN: Yeah. Here’s his solution.
SIMON: Which leads me to the fourth point, which is environment. Which is, we’re taking this amazing group of young, fantastic kids who were just dealt a bad hand. It’s no fault of their own. And we put them in corporate environments that care more about the numbers than they do about the kids.
GLENN: Okay. Stop for a second.
PAT: I’m sorry. It’s not a corporation’s responsibility to raise children when they’re 32 years old.
JEFFY: When all they care about is making money.
GLENN: Hold on just a second.
PAT: Come on.
GLENN: We may be speaking different languages. So let me go there first.
PAT: I’m speaking English. You are speaking?
GLENN: I’m learning to speak progressive.
GLENN: I’m learning to speak the language that is being spoken all around us.
PAT: Yes, you are. Yes. So how do you put this in a progressive way?
GLENN: So what he’s saying here is, I think you’re hearing this in a progressive way. I think if I would rephrase —
PAT: Especially knowing him, yeah —
GLENN: I agree. I agree. So let me now say it this way.
First of all, do we generally agree it is their responsibility to fit in the world? The world doesn’t — the world doesn’t shapeshift for you.
PAT: Right. The millennials have to fit in.
GLENN: You have to find your way in.
PAT: Yes. Yes.
GLENN: So when he says, at no fault of their own, you can say, yes — society raised them. Their parents raised them in a certain way. And they were used as guinea pigs to experiment on, something that we took all eternal principles and threw them out the window and said, “Hey, being first is just as good at being last,” right?
So through that part, no fault of their own. However, once their life starts to fall apart, it is their responsibility, correct?
PAT: Yeah, there’s personal responsibility at every step, right?
GLENN: Every step. But when you’re a kid and everything in society is training you to go one way, you generally don’t say —
PAT: It’s difficult.
GLENN: — well, that doesn’t make sense to me.
STU: Over your life you should reexamine those things, of course.
GLENN: But what does it take for you to reexamine your life?
PAT: It takes a crash. You have to hit a bottom.
GLENN: Something has to go wrong.
STU: The most common.
GLENN: Something has to go wrong. And it could be just as much, I keep getting these trophies, and I feel like crap. I keep getting — I keep getting everything I want, and I’m not happy at all.
That’s the most likely crash. But that crash will lead to suicide.
JEFFY: And that crash is coming.
JEFFY: He cites some numbers.
GLENN: Suicide. So that crash is a crash of no self-esteem. Because nothing has ever given you self-esteem because you’ve never been taught what self-esteem comes from. And that is accomplishment. Okay?
GLENN: Doing something. Even if it is — it’s like — when you go clean your house or when you were a kid and you cleaned your room, you felt good after cleaning your room.
PAT: Yeah. Even though you didn’t want to, to begin with.
GLENN: Correct. There’s something to be said for accomplishment.
So now, let me show you what he just said, I think, about, it’s the corporation’s responsibility. No, it’s not.
Well, yes. Kind of, it is. We’ll go there next.