Times are changing, which means that advice you’ve heard from your parents or grandparents might not be as helpful as it used to be. Here’s the top baby boomer advice that’s no longer as useful as it used to be.
Note: Some quotes in this piece have been lightly edited for grammar.
1: Carry Some Cash
Now that almost everyone has a smartphone on hand, one person said the sage advice to “always have a dime for a pay phone” doesn’t apply anymore. “That could be reinterpreted as ‘always have some cash in case of emergencies,'” someone replied. But this advice isn’t 100% misguided in current times. “If your phone dies, you can hail a cab and pay cash to take you home.”
2: Television Troubles
Have you ever been warned not to sit too close to the TV, or your eyes will cross permanently? You’re not alone. “You got told your eyes would cross; we got told it was because of the radiation,” one person remembers.
3: Loyalty Matters
One person says a boomer advised them to stay with one employer their entire career since “they’ll never steer you wrong.” Someone defended the elder perspective on this advice: “Many years ago, many people worked 30+ years at one job. Times changed. But it doesn’t make anyone right or wrong.”
4: Out of Pocket
“You’re not always going to have a calculator,” someone recalls getting told. Another responded and said that advice wasn’t even helpful in 1984. “If you were working a job requiring a math-heavy involvement, you WERE going to always carry a calculator. They made pocket holsters specifically FOR that.”
5: Do It Yourself
If your job hunt isn’t currently fruitful, it’s probably because you need to walk into every office in person, ask to speak to the hiring manager, and give them your resume. At least, according to boomers. “Every place I walked into to do this, they laughed at me and told me to do it online,” reflected a younger-generation commenter.
6: Talking to the Wall
Old-time office space ideals have changed since the boomer heyday. “My Dad is telling me I should stop working from home and go in the office every day to show ‘dedication,'” a frustrated son says. “To whom? No one’s there to take notice.”
7: Dodging Debt
“Never get a credit card or take a loan,” one person heard from older generations. “People who do all end up in debt.” They were surprised to learn that before the mid-90s, you didn’t need a credit score for much of anything. “You can’t even rent some places nowadays without a credit score.”
8: Keep the Change
One person says their great grandma always advised them to keep all their spare change in their car so they’ll always have gas money. “My grandma does that,” another person said. “She did it so much when she forgot her wallet that she paid entirely in change at a restaurant, so potentially not entirely useless.”
9: Not So Relaxing
What’s the point of having vacation time if you never take it? The boomer culture saw it as a strategy to get ahead since many believe people who use PTO (paid time off) are the first to get axed. “I heard this so much growing up that I felt both ill and guilty every time I took a vacation after I finally had a job,” comments a younger-generation employee.
10: No Advice Is Good Advice
“I’ve found that the boomers I know are helplessly clueless regarding the financial realities we’re experiencing,” one embittered commenter says. “And the worst thing is, they have no inclination to learn and try to understand. Instead, they prefer to tell us we’re clearly doing something wrong.”
11: Smack That
“If it’s on the fritz, just smack it hard with your hand,” one person remembers hearing from boomers. Most of us are familiar with going full-on smackdown with a TV remote. Now, there’s an app for that.
12: Night Owl
One individual remembers holding off on their phone calls ’till nighttime, per their parent’s advice, so they’d get the lower rates. Needless to say, that boomer advice doesn’t apply anymore.
13: Outdated Advice
After hearing, “Why don’t you call up [company] and ask if they’re hiring?” for the millionth time, one person retorts, “Tell me you haven’t been on a job hunt since 1983 without telling me you haven’t been on a job hunt since 1983.”
14: X Marks the Spot
Learning how to fold a map isn’t exactly a life skill younger generations need anymore, yet the map debate remains. “I was taught NEVER to fold a map,” recalls a commenter. “A properly stored map is rolled in a tube so tattering creases don’t obscure the information.”
15: McNugget Houses
A non-boomer says their former coworker was the proud owner of three houses and would always question his younger generation colleagues why they wouldn’t buy a house already. “Never mind [that] he’s bought up several places for the price of a McNugget when he first started working, and now everything is insanely high,” says the frustrated coworker.
16: Passing It on to You
A boomer speaks for their generation and says that most of the advice coming from their peers is “less than useless.” They say, “We have fallen below the baseline of competency for modern life. Thank God for grandchildren.”
Do Boomers and Gen X Have It Easier?
Wish you were born in a different generation? Some millennials do. Millennials state their cases of why baby boomers and Gen X have life so much easier. But is it true?
How Did Baby Boomers Get Such a Terrible Reputation?
It’s no secret that folks born between 1946 and 1964 catch a lot of heat, but one boomer asked people in an online forum when it all began. These are their best guesses.
Younger Baby Boomers Are Poorer Than Their Older Boomer Peers
Are you a younger baby boomer who feels financially behind where your older boomer peers were at your age? Statistically, that’s true. Here’s why.
Say What? 15 Words People Commonly Butcher in Conversation
The English language is deceptive, according to grammar enthusiasts who share the top 15 words that sound nothing like they look on paper. How many of these words are you guilty of mispronouncing?
15 Biggest Generational Lies
It’s easy to believe what’s told to you when you’re younger. But as the years go by, you realize everything isn’t what it seems.