Lack of Motivation in Boys Linked to Media Influences
Throughout generations, we have internalized messages that have suggested men are smarter, better, and more capable than women in the working world. Women work extremely hard to achieve the same level of success as men. When women and men who obtain the same achievements are compared, people often still consider women to be less capable, selfish, or undesirable as co-worker. How is this standard affecting motivation in youth? Psychology Today states that educational success in girls has risen, but fallen for boys due to a lack of motivation.
The gender stereotypes society is attached to is creating a lack of motivation in boys today. American girls have always earned slightly better grades than boys. But over the past three decades, boys are now markedly under-represented among those earning A’s. Recent research showed that among 42 public high schools in Boston, 30 valedictorians were girls, 12 were boys. In general, among students earning highest honors, girls now typically outnumber boys by 2 to 1, or more. If we continue to allow media to internalize messages that men are better, smarter, and more capable, boys are going to continue to express a lack of motivation to succeed. Gender shouldn’t determine the pressure society puts on youth to become successful.
According to Psychology Today, there are multiple factors that are creating a lack of motivation in boys. One being video games. Many boys, want to feel as if they have conquered or triumphed against a great challenge. Today, boys don’t boast about their life achievements, they boast about their accomplishments in videogames.
Sexual intimacy with women has been a major motivator for a young man throughout history. To achieve this, men worked hard to make something of themselves to impress young women. Porn has replaced actual intimacy for many young men, causing a lack of motivation and shift away from the realities of the real world.
With Time Comes Change
Media exposure is linked to both of these factors contributing to a lack of motivation in boys. Boys are basing levels of achievement from unrealistic platforms. Due to this, a lack of motivation has embodied many boys and men. Almost 20 years ago, scholars voiced concerns about the underrepresentation of girls among high academic achievers. Today, the situations have reversed. As a society we need to stop promoting unrealistic achievements to youth and start setting equal expectations not based on gender.