Just like emotional support dogs, craft beer, and Stranger Things, millennials love astrology. But why? Why is astrology so popular among the most ridiculed, most influential generation of our time? Well, the explanations are completely logical and not at all written in the stars. Studies have shown that things like stress, the political climate, and the lingering affects of the Great Recession may have pushed millennials to look to the stars for answers about their futures. It’s also noteworthy that this is hardly the first time a generation has turned towards astrology. In fact, the 18th century and the 1970s both saw a movement toward spirituality and astrology after periods of clinical and scientific focus. And hey, maybe millennials do some extreme things like look to astrology for answers about the infamous 27 Club too, but they would like some answers about Janis Joplin and Amy Winehouse.
So, ol’ Carol can totally blame millennials for ruining some of her favorite things like chain restaurants and bar soap and napkins, but Carol can't blame millennials for ruining astrology, because, if anything, they're making it better.
If you get hurt during Aries season remember to accessorize pic.twitter.com/3u9N9Te6Hm— Astro Poets (@poetastrologers) March 31, 2018
While astrology might be considered pseudoscience per se, you can apply concrete science and statistics to studying those who believe in astrology. A 2012 study shows that 58% of Americans between 18 – 24-years-old believe in astrology, with the 25 - 34 age group not far behind, and that number has only continued to grow. That’s over half of millennials. What’s more is that 65% of people who believe in astrology consider it to be a credible, scientific source. When compared to a 2004 poll, in which 66% of Americans said they thought astrology was complete nonsense, it’s clear that more Americans – more younger Americans, especially – are opening themselves up to the influence of the zodiac.
The increase in people who believe in astrology may be due, simply, to stress. Studies have shown that when people have more stress factors in their lives, they are more likely to turn towards astrology for guidance, not unlike religion. When people have less stress, they are less likely to embrace astrology. It’s not shocking, then, that more people looked towards astrology following the Great Recession. With people losing their jobs and their houses and the economy in a downturn, astrology may have provided some with a light at the end of a very dark, very long tunnel.
While the economy has seemingly corrected course since the Great Recession, millennials still struggle to pay back student loans, find secure jobs, plan for their futures, and save for the down payment on a house, leaving them stressed about reaching life’s milestones. Some studies even claim that millennials are the most stressed generation ever, which may explain why they look to astrology for some stress relief. Millennials just need something that makes them feel like it's all going to be okay.
Them: 9 to 5— Astro Poets (@poetastrologers) March 30, 2018
Sagittarius: the weekend
Studies have shown that Americans, especially younger generations, have been turning away from traditional religions more and more, which has resulted in a steady decline in church attendance. With a quarter of Americans identifying as “spiritual, but not religious” and millennials being the least traditionally religious living generation, it seems that people may not believe in traditional religions anymore, but they still yearn to believe in something. That’s where astrology comes in. Astrology provides both a way to understand the events of the universe and a hope for a better future, yet it has no connection to a formal religion. So, millennials may not be going to church, but they're reading their horoscopes.
There has been an uptick in the way astrology audiences perform online. Some sites even claim that the typical horoscope article got 150% more traffic in 2017 than it would have in 2016. This could be due to the political climate, as 63% of Americans now say they are concerned about the country’s future. And who is the most stressed about the future of the country? Millennials! 56% of people say that reading the news stressed them out and millennials are more likely than other generations to read said stressful news. This news-related stress and uncertainty about the future may be what’s pushing millennials to consume astrology-related content.