I Gotta Be Me Index by ŠKODA reveals Baby Boomers are more comfortable in their own skin than millennials
The I Gotta Be Me Index has also revealed the barriers that people ranging from the Boomers to Generations X and Y and most recently, millennials, encounter to expressing themselves. The study highlights that family beats friends as the best place for freedom of expression — with 32 per cent of respondents feeling more confident during time spent with family.
By comparison; just 17 per cent felt they could be themselves on social media with more than a quarter (26 per cent) citing pressure to conform as a primary source of insecurity.
ŠKODA’s index highlights that being true to yourself is often easier said than done, with almost one in three Brits (28 per cent) feeling unable to express our individuality on a day-to-day basis.
Almost a third (31 per cent) claim that a fear of being judged can often be a barrier to expressing themselves. Females are more likely than males to admit to this fear (37 per cent versus 24 per cent respectively). This is especially relevant within the digital environment; two out of five (40 per cent) 18-24-year olds admit to feeling pressure from social media over any other external factor.
ŠKODA ambassador Paloma Faith has joined forces with artists from different musical genres including classical, pop-rock and grime, to reprise the 1968 Sammy Davis Jr track, I’ve Gotta Be Me — with each artist releasing their own version of the track — at a time, based on the survey findings, when it’s more important than ever to remember to be who you are.
Leading clinical psychologist, Dr Jessamy Hibberd, commented on the findings: “It’s so important to celebrate individuality and to have the confidence to express yourself. When you do this, you are living with authenticity. Research shows people who live authentically are likely to experience greater happiness, closer relationships, more positive emotions, higher self-esteem and feel more satisfied with their lives. They also experience less stress, depression and anxiety.”
Despite external pressures more than half (63 per cent) are confident in their ability to succeed in life. The Baby Boomers have the most positive outlook with an incredible 72 per cent feeling a joie de vivre, compared to 51 per cent of Generation X.
Mental health can be a significant barrier to self-expression with almost a quarter (23 per cent), stating it affected their confidence, whilst 35 per cent admitted that their appearance can have a negative effect on their mood.
Dr Hibberd added: “Acceptance is a fundamental human need – we all want to fit in and belong. It stems back to our evolutionary routes – we had to be part of a group to survive – but keep an eye on how much you are doing it and keep hold of an inner measure of who you are.”
With almost half the responses (43 per cent) saying they would be less worried if external pressures to conform did not exist, Hibberd’s words echo those of Davis Jr’s song: “I can’t be right for somebody else If I’m not right for me” and ŠKODA’s collaboration with five inspiring — but totally different — artists leads the charge in being unapologetically unique for today’s generation.
The diverse renditions of I’ve Gotta Be Me by Paloma Faith, The Kingdom Choir, Lady Leshurr, Alexis Ffrench, and The Sherlocks can be found here.
You can find out how best you express your individuality by taking the I Gotta Be Me quiz by visiting: www.igottabeme.org