Things To Know About Generation X

By Nicole Beasley

Updated December 19, 2018

Generation X comes after the Baby Boomers but before the Millennial generation. According to Wikipedia, individuals who fall into the Generation X category were born between the early 1960s and mid-1980s. According to a U.S. census report, there are currently 84 million people who fall into the category above.


Each generation comes with their attribution and stereotypes, for better or for worse. Gen Xers are thought to be members of a time where society was going through various cultural and social changes. Children are growing up during this period usually experienced less parental supervision than their Baby Boomer counterparts.

Generation Xers furthermore grew up during a time where divorce rates increased, and more women and mothers entered the workforce outside of their homes. This particular generation has also been linked and associated with hip-hop music, entrepreneurship, the balance between work and life, and independent films.

The Overall Perceptions Of Generation X

As previously stated, each or group as their ideas of Generation X. However, there are some overall perceptions and characteristics associated with individuals as a whole who fall into this category. As always, there are certain anomalies and exceptions to the rules. Nevertheless, HowStuffWorks cites Gen Xers as "geeks, independent thinkers, and artists."

Like most conceptions, the ones held about individuals who identify as Generation X come with certain reasons and supporting evidence. For instance, platforms such as Google, YouTube, and Amazon were started by Gen Xers. In the eyes of many people, the development of the platform above displays certain levels of tech savviness or, to some people, "geekiness."

A similar dichotomy applies to the tendency to associate free thinking with Generation X. This particular characteristic is believed to be an offshoot of the culture and environment in which many Gen Xers were raised. Due to divorce, parents entering into the work world, and other similar factors, many Gen Xers had to learn how to fend for themselves at a relatively young age. Therefore, they inevitably developed traits like autonomy and self-sufficiency. Both of these are strongly linked to independent thinking. Therefore, many Gen Xers do well in the workforce and on their own.

When many people hear the word "artists," they may be reminded of young, trendy millennials donning casual clothes and beanies. However, many current artists fall into the Generation X category. Some of the most popular and well-known ones include Brad Pitt, Julie Belcher, Julia Roberts, etc. While any generation can engage in artistic works or crafts, Gen Xers are thought to have a unique knack for the arts.


The Economic Contributions Of Generation X

The facts and statistics speak for themselves. As documented by Vision Critical, Gen Xers make sizable contributions to the economy and the workforce. First and foremost, Generation X is responsible for 31% of America's total income, even though they only comprise 25% of the U.S. population. This speaks to not only the work ethic but also the capabilities of individuals who fall into this category.

The contribution above is only the tip of the scale. In addition to their sizable contributions to U.S. income, Generation X has moreover founded more than half of the start-up companies and businesses in America. Considering the massive amount of individuals who work for start-ups, this particular feat is quite impressive. This means that Gen Xers have created countless jobs and opportunities for people who needed them. Nobody can credibly deny the overall endowments of Generation X.

Additional intel from Vision Critical furthermore states that Gen Xers spend more than their counterparts when it comes to lodging, entertainment, dining out, and shopping for clothing. This may come as a shock to people who generally associate high amounts of spending with the millennial generation. On average, individuals who fall into the Generation X category earn roughly $50,000 on an annual basis.

Finally, Gen Xers who can maintain successful working relationships with their millennial counterparts have engendered the decline of employee turnover rates by 50%, while surging levels of accomplishment and productivity by 11%.

The Culture And Education Of Generation X


As a whole, Generation X is widely regarded as knowledgeable, well-versed, and educated. The associations above are likely fueled by the fact that 35% of Gen Xers currently hold college degrees. Due to their possession of said degrees, this particular generation is more likely to acquire higher level positions within certain companies or firms.

Members of Generation X are also thought to be productive and successful mentors for millennials. This is largely because Gen Xers usually have the real world experience and information that their younger counterparts have yet to attain.

Surprisingly, individuals who fall into Generation X are also extremely high consumers of technology and media. Again, this may come as a shock to people who frequently brand millennials as the ones who are obsessed with various forms of media. On average, Gen Xers devote seven hours each week to social media.

This is slightly more time than the just over six hours that millennials spend on platforms like Twitter, Instagram, etc. 81% of Generation X members have Facebook accounts; however, their accounts are generally used as a means of keeping track of the news. Millennials are more likely to employ social media platforms as outlets to promote themselves.

The Influence Of Generation X

In many regards, Generation X is often overlooked. In this day and age, millennials receive much more press and overall attention than their older counterparts. However, Gen Xers' lack of press should not be confused for their lack of influence, affirms Forbes. As previously stated, the education and credentials of Gen Xers allow them to rise to certain professional heights which millennials have yet to reach.

Their work and mentorship of millennials also leave a notable impact as well. At some point, millennials will essentially become the dominant and leading generation in America. When this happens, the quality of their leadership will most certainly be impacted by the quality of guidance they received in previous times.

The influence of Generation X is not merely limited to their impact on millennials. Centro affirms that companies and brands which are looking to increase the success of their businesses would do well to market and advertise to Gen Xers.

However, there are specific methods that companies must employ if they wish to reach and connect with members of Generation X truly. In this particular scenario, clarity and straightforwardness are the most effective avenues. Gen Xers want to know the specific ins and outs of any marketed product or service. Moreover, Generation X needs to clearly understand the upsides of the product/service and how it can improve their lives.

The Great Equalizer

Generation X certain comes with their unique habits, qualities, and statistics. Understanding each of the elements above is important and positively impacts American society. However, despite the plethora of apparent differences, there are still things which unite everyone, regardless of whether they fall into the category of Baby Boomers, Generation X, or Millennials.


Each generation will experience the highs and lows of life. Each generation will face obstacles, challenges, and potential setbacks as they work to achieve goals and accomplish dreams. Each generation will, at some point, experience happiness, sadness, joy, pain, excitement, anxiety, etc. However, it is critical for each member of any generation to know that they are not alone.

There will always be options and alternatives for those who are open and willing to receive them. In many cases, life can get difficult and seemingly unbearable. This is when having someone to reach out to or confide in comes in handy. So many people have convinced themselves that they can do everything on their own, but the reality is that everyone needs help sometimes.

Unfortunately, people can sometimes feel reluctant to seek out help. They may feel as though asking for consultation or guidance is indicative of some type of weakness. Many people are told that being strong means handling and figuring everything out by oneself.

However, this couldn't possibly be further from the truth. The willingness and ability to ask for help demonstrates self-awareness and strength. Nobody can do it all on their own, nor were they meant to. Guidance and assistance from others allow each person to grow, learn, and thrive so that they may overcome obstacles and evolve into the best versions of themselves.

Here at BetterHelp, we pride ourselves on providing world-class care and guidance to anyone who comes to us. Our team of licensed professionals has proven track records of working with each and helping them to overcome obstacles and live their best lives. The ultimate mission of BetterHelp is to provide easy and accessible counseling and therapy to those who can benefit from it.

No matter who you are, what you may be going through, or which generation you are a part of, BetterHelp will always be here as an option. Ultimately, the choice is yours; if you or a loved one ever feel inclined to contact BetterHelp for any reason, you can do so by clicking here.

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