With different generations or age groups come different cultures. Fashion, popular culture, and even taste in music are unique to every generation. Just as how trends shift through the years, the way we communicate, and what we say, evolve too.
One day you’re on social media and suddenly see new terms of expression on your newsfeed. What does it mean to be ghosted or woke? Here are different millennial words and expressions that gained popularity.
Millennial Words and Expressions That Gained Popularity
Adulting means to act like a responsible adult. This is often expressed when doing various errands, house chores, paying bills, or going to work. Adulting can also mean taking proper care of yourself, or generally being mature about things.
“Adulting is when you prefer sleeping early to staying out all night drinking.”
“I’m going to process my documents and passport requirements today. Hashtag adulting.”
Commonly added to personal social media posts, this acronym stands for “as f**k”. Its purpose is to create emphasis, but it is not something one should use when talking to your boss. Its use is similar to “very” or “super”.
“I’m hungry AF.”
“It’s hot AF outside, it feels like summer.”
This is usually used in posts or pictures of young couples calling each other bae. It is not short for babe or baby. It’s an acronym that stands for “Before Anyone Else” and is used as a term of endearment.
“Bae planned something really nice for my birthday. I am so excited.”
“I’m thrilled to visit Hawaii with my bae. I think he’s going to propose.”
Basic means mainstream, standard, and not having originality. It can be used to describe a person’s taste, personality, fashion style, and preference in general. It is not meant to be a compliment, and it also means just following what’s trendy or popular.
“He was so basic with his music preference.”
“I saw Sophia wearing yoga pants and buying Starbucks like everyone else. She’s so basic.”
You have probably seen many posts saying bye repeatedly to a certain person named “Felicia”. “Bye, Felicia” is a popular informal expression based on the 1995 comedy movie “Friday”.
Ice Cube, who starred in the film and co-wrote the script, said that “Bye, Felicia” is “the phrase ‘to get anyone out of your face”. In the scene, a character named Felicia was being shut down or dismissed. Use this phrase to say goodbye to someone or something that no longer matters.
“I have filed my resignation. Bye, Felicia!”
“I am packing my bags and leaving town. Bye, Felicia.”
Interestingly, clap backs have existed way before the internet. It just gained popularity when celebrities respond to critics on social media. A clap back is a comeback.
To clap back means to respond quickly and effectively to criticisms and unfair judgments. It is standing up for yourself. Sometimes, it’s also described to be ruthless, savage, or with attitude. You can clap back when someone is being rude to you, and you want to put them in their place.
“A Hollywood celebrity’s clap back is trending right now.”
“That famous singer is the queen of clap back on Twitter.”
Cray is the shortened form of crazy. It means crazy or feeling crazy. It can also be used as “cray-cray” which means really crazy.
“Exams are coming up. It’s getting cray-cray at school.”
“Why are you acting so cray?”
Similar to the standard dictionary definition, extra means excessive, over the top, or dramatic. It is also used to describe something that is way too much.
“Evan went extra tonight for his party.”
“She was so extra when she presented her work during the meeting.”
Fam is short for family. It is used to refer to a group of friends who feel like family. They are people you trust very much. This is not used to refer to biological relatives.
“I’m hanging out with the fam today.”
“Hey fam, check this out!”
FOMO stands for “Fear of Missing Out”. It is used when one feels anxious about being left out. It can also be missing out on the fun and the latest news. A person also experiences FOMO when they want to keep connected to what is happening with their friends or family.
“I thought you weren’t coming to the party?”
“I’m here because the pictures on Facebook are making me FOMO.”
Gassed is used to describe someone who is full of themselves. They may have received a lot of compliments or achieved something to blow up their ego.
“We are happy for you, but no need to be gassed about it.”
“She’s gassed because she recently got the new iPhone.”
To ghost means to disappear completely. Getting ghosted is getting left behind without any warning. This is commonly used in the dating scene.
It can be used when a person stood you up for a date, or when the person you’re dating suddenly disappeared. Someone who showed interest and then disappeared after hanging out is an act of ghosting. Suddenly cutting off communication without warning is also ghosting.
“I feel bad that Hannah ghosted me when I asked her for another date.”
“I ghosted him last week. I have not returned any of his calls.”
“Don’t ghost her, that’s rude.”
This is the opposite of FOMO. JOMO is the joy of missing out. It is feeling content and not worried about missing out on the fun. It also means taking a break from social events.
“I’m staying home and skipping the party. JOMO.”
“JOMO! I’m going on a social media cleanse.”
Lit can mean really cool or fun. It is usually used to describe parties. Lit can also be used to describe exciting experiences.
“The music is great, and there’s free booze. This party is LIT!”
“She posted her skydiving in LA. That was so lit.”
So, the next time you are out and about, even if you are not a millennial and you just want to understand your kids, remember these millennial words and phrase definitions to help you get through it!