Setting Boundaries: Why Quiet Quitting Is A Form Of Self-Care For Generation-Z

“live to work, not work to live”- unknown

Gen Z is dedicated to living their best life- literally. Mental health is a priority for this generation, making everything that affects that an issue. 87% of Gen Z in the U.S. say that school/work hinders their mental health; therefore, a solution was put in place to decrease that percentage – quit quitting. 

What Is Quiet Quitting? 

According to The Hill, “quiet quitting” refers to when employees stop going above and beyond at the workplace. Employees start to disengage from their work but do not actually quit. A synonym for the term could be ‘setting boundaries.’ Quiet quitting can look like waiting until the next day to finish assignments instead of staying later or refusing to do more than you are paid. According to the latest Gallup Poll, “quiet quitters” make up at least 50% of the U.S. workforce, and Gen Z and younger millennials, born in 1989 and after, reported the lowest engagement of all during the first quarter of 2022 at 31%. The term isn’t new but resurfaced as a result of TikTokers sharing how they’d slowly detach themselves from their place of work. The term “quiet quitting now” has over 162 million views on TikTok, signifying how important the topic is to Gen Z and Millenials. 

Why Are People Quiet Quitting?

“I decided to quiet quit because, during the pandemic, I started my own business, and the more I started to invest in my own business the less I became interested in my job,” Brandon Scales, a 27-year-old celebrity videographer, told Essence Girls United. 

“I had worked so hard and was burnt out, only to have to do more,” Ela Antwi-Boasiako, a 24-year-old Talent and Engagement Officer, told us, “companies need to understand that they need to have realistic metrics for their employees because if they don’t, that can do a lot to a person’s mental health.” 

Ela and Brandon share the same sentiments as many younger people in the workforce. You can find those opinions scrolling through the hashtag #quietquitting on TikTok. Gen Z is passionate about projects outside their job, completely burnt out from ‘hustle culture’ expectations, or both. Therefore, they are “working to live and not living to work” – setting boundaries to view a job as just that- not a lifestyle or personality, but an opportunity to fund their livelihood. That, for them, is a form of self-care. 

Quiet Quitting As A Form of Self-Care 

According to, self-care is the act of attending to one’s physical or mental health, generally without medical or other professional consultation. Polls from Ogivly and Genration Lab Survey state that 80% of Gen Z in the U.S. say they currently use “self-care” as a form of mental health care. That same study states that Gen Z defines self-care as relaxing, time alone, and finding joy. By establishing boundaries with your job that prevents work from overflowing into personal life (whether physically doing work or exerting an insane amount of energy into thinking about work)- space is created to implement activities that define what self-care is to Gen Z. Therefore, quiet quitting is not laziness or taking a casual approach to your job– it is self-care- to maintain superior mental health. 

The Root Of It All 

Disengagement at work went downhill toward the latter half of 2021 when the “Great Resignation” occurred. During this time, 47 million people in the United States voluntarily left their job. During the pandemic, intense reflection and redirection took place. Since the nation was hit with so much death, it seemed as if living a better life became the focus and priority. Twitter is flooded with “what I learned during the Pandemic tweets” that mainly focus on family, health, fiscal responsibility, and personal development. 

The commonality between those lessons is an appreciation for things that prioritizing your job cannot offer. Gen Z has grasped that importance and is dedicated to living life without being consumed by a career. The world is now committing to quit quitting. 

About Shelby: Shelby Denise Smith is a full-time Social Media Editor and part-time Freelance Writer. She loves writing about news, wellness, and beauty, as well as hosting impactful conversations with influencers and experts on those subjects.

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