• Hayley Gibson

Understanding millennials social habits

Compared to generations above them, millennials have a very different outlook on alcohol consumption in social situations. With a stronger focus on employment, health and saving money, sober socialising is the new trend embraced by mindful millennials.

Reducing alcohol intake

The 2016 National Drug Strategy Household Survey reported that millennials were consuming less alcohol than previous generations with many opting to abstain from alcohol or drink at low-risk levels. For those engaging in sober socialising, the reasons appear to revolve around maintaining their physical and mental health as opposed to removing alcohol due to drink problems.

The millennial approach to sobriety

In a society that constantly promotes wellbeing, mindfulness and trendy health foods millennials are pressured to maintain a nutritious and healthy diet. Giving up alcohol is simply an extension of clean eating.

Millennials are less-inclined to socialise in bars or attend house parties thanks to the ease in which they can now communicate in group chats, predominantly via their smartphones. This saves time and money, hence reducing social drinking as conversation is initiated through text, also allowing for multi-tasking which is vital for active millennials.

As a career-focused generation, millennials follow the motto “Work Hard, Play Later.” Keen to progress in the workplace and make good impressions, they spend more time prepping for work than lingering for last orders.

Social media influencing decisions

Millennials are permanently active on social media, forever updating their peers on their current activities, often through photo-sharing apps like Snapchat and Instagram. Healthy living is an intrinsic part of their identity and millennials waste no time authenticating this sober lifestyle through their social identities. Ranging from tasteful granola bowls and super smoothies to new sports apparel and a map of their 10k run, tracked using their fitness app.

According to a report by Heineken, self-awareness and staying in control are the main incentives for millennials consuming less alcohol on nights out. The impact that a drunk photo could have on their carefully constructed online identities is enough of a reason to remain sober.

Millennials alternative to alcohol-fuelled nights out

This generation want more for their money – spending their hard-earned cash at the same bar every weekend is not their style. Instead, millennials are attracted to experiences, something memorable and diverse such as pop-up restaurants, cookery classes and mini concerts. Linking back to social identities, millennials want to share these experiences on their social platforms, continually evidencing their sophisticated social lifestyle.