Millennial Dictionary of the creative generation

Meme-worthy words create new language for youth

Written By Dara Collins, Editor-Elect

From a Thayer Hall dorm room full of females, a passing student may hear, “Oh girl, slay!”

Then, passing through Village Park on the way to class, a student might look over at a cute couple by the fountain and describe them as “goals.”

The younger generation may as well scrap the Merriam-Webster Dictionary and create its own for the amount of slang terms and phrases it has created. As a part of this generation that has coined the unusual terminology, I am here to explain the definitions and usage of some common terms.

With the help of my peers, the Internet and specifically Urban Dictionary, The Globe presents an excerpt of The Millennial Dictionary.



“Adulting” is used as a verb and is the act of taking on responsibility like that of an adult or an individual living an independent life. For example, this type of responsibility includes paying rent and utility bills as well as other payments mom and dad used to take care of.

Usage: Adulting is hard.



“Dope” is used as an adjective, contrary to the older generation’s usage of this word. The younger crowd has strayed from such synonyms for illegal drugs and prefers to be blunt on the topic. Nonetheless, millennials enjoy using this term to describe something that would otherwise be known as cool or great.

Usage: That concert last night was dope! The guitar solo was amazing.



“Extra” is used as an adjective, and the most common term to compare it too would be “dramatic.” One who acts in an extra manner is dramatic and over the top. The actions of the extra individual prove quite unnecessary.

Usage: She was super extra at that event. She was screaming at the top of her lungs which was definitely unnecessary.



“Goals” is used as an adjective and is typically used to describe something positive to strive for. Many phrases incorporate the word on social media including “relationship goals,” “body goals,” “life goals,” etc. Of course, this phrase can be twisted with sarcasm, and an individual could joke that an unideal situation is goals.

Usage: Carley and Zach are so sweet. They’re literally goals.



“Lit” is used as an adjective, and can oftentimes be interchangeable with “dope.” While “dope” is a more calm way of saying something is cool or great, using “lit” takes the description up a few notches. Something that is lit is amazing, incredible or, dare I say, super dope.

Usage: Nicole’s birthday party was lit last weekend!



“Lowkey” is used as an adjective and is used to describe something that small-scale or to be kept hush hush. This term is the opposite of “highkey,” which is also a part of the millennials word bank.

Usage: Let’s keep this relationship lowkey until we decide when to go public.



“Salty” is used as an adjective, and millennials most likely will not be referring to food when using this term. When someone is salty, they are angry, irritated or could even be holding a grudge. A salty individual typically wears this feeling on their face.

Usage: I am still salty about Hannah spilling cranberry juice on my white shirt.



“Same” is a complicated term. “Same” equates to a feeling that makes complete sense or none at all. For example, an individual could see someone sleeping in an unusual public space and respond with, “same,” indicating they are equally as tired. On the other hand, an individual could look at an inanimate object and respond with, “same,” leaving an interpretation wide open.

Usage: *Watches an individual scream from stress* Same.



“Shook” is used as an adjective and has varying meanings. Typically, this term means an individual is surprised or shocked but could also mean startled or scared.

Usage: I am still shook she said that.



“Slay” is used as a verb and is used to compliment an individual on the way they executed something, whether it be choosing an outfit, dancing, winning an award, etc.

Usage: Jordan, those shoes are dope. You’re slaying the outfit today.



“V” is abbreviation for the word “very,” and this creation supports those who call the millennial generation lazy. It is a quick and efficient way to express the enhancement of how an individual feels, whether it be sad, happy, excited, worries, etc. “V” can possibly be accredited to abbreviated text lingo.

Usage: I barely got any sleep last night. I’m v tired.



“Woke” is used as an adjective and simply means to be aware and have knowledge of an individual’s surroundings, socially, politically, economically, etc. When an individual is woke, they are knowledgeable, informed and open-minded, the opposite of ignorant and close-minded.

Usage: The Globe is, in fact, woke and knows exactly what happens on its campus and within its Downtown community.