For better or worse, all languages evolve, and not just through time, but also within regions. Every 15 to 20 miles you travel, the dialect and lingo changes even within the same states and countries. While some words remain local in the vicinity, some words get picked up by millennials across the board and take a life of their own. Thanks to social media and the internet, this has become a fast-paced phenomenon where new words are created and popularised as well as old words are given new meanings, every day.
Keeping up with Millennials and their lingo is tough, as you often find yourself scratching your head over a word or its context that you do not understand.
But fear not! Here we have compiled a list of the most popular ‘dope’ words Millennials are using these days along with their meanings. You never know when one of these might save you and also make you more #relatable!
Meaning – Adulting is defined as taking on responsibility, behaving like a grown-up and engaging in activities that are associated with an independent life. For e.g.: Paying your taxes, learning how to cook or just paying your utility bills.
Usage – Why is adulting so hard? (often asked by millennials)
Meaning – Nothing to do with basketballs or bouncy castles. The definition is – To leave
Usage – Let’s pay the bill and bounce!
Usage – Alright man, I’m getting late. I’ll bounce.
Meaning – It was initially (and at times still is) used either in place of the word ‘calm’ or ‘cool/easy going’. For e.g. If a discussion got too heated, one would tell the other to chill out (calm down) or when describing someone who is relaxed and not easily bothered, you would say “My parents are pretty chill with me going for parties”. It is now also synonymous to saying “hang out”.
Usage – Can we chill at someone’s house instead of going out for coffee?
Honorary Mention: Netflix & Chill
Be careful when saying these words. Let’s “Netflix & Chill” seldom means that the person is inviting you over to watch Netflix together. Netflix and chill is actually a popular euphemism to invite someone over for sexual activity, usually casually.
Meaning – Dope, depending on the context, can mean cool, excellent or very good. The title of this post might finally make sense to you and just to make it clear, this post has nothing to do with synonyms for illegal drugs (dope). Dope is also used as an answer to show excitement and appreciation.
Usage – How is your food? ‘It’s dope!’
Usage -He can speak 6 different languages fluently. ‘Woah! That’s dope!’
Usage – How was the movie last night? It was pretty dope, you should definitely watch it!
Meaning – Something/someone that is unnecessarily excessive; over the top or over dramatic.
Usage – When someone is uncontrollably crying in a not-so-sad movie, you would describe them as being extra.
Meaning – Fam is short for family and is used to refer to one’s friends. However, it is mostly used singularly to refer to one friend.
Usage – How’s it goin’, fam?
Meaning – To a certain extent, it is similar to the actual meaning wherein it is somewhere one aspires to reach/ something one wants to have but it is used a little differently in a sentence. You may have seen this in social media posts and memes as ‘relationship goals’, ‘hair goals’, etc
Usage – To say to someone that you like their body and would like your body to look like theirs, you would say, “Your body is goals!”
Meaning – Used to describe something awesome/amazing. Not to be confused with ‘Litt up’, which also deserves an honorary mention. Popularized by the character Louise Litt from the show Suits, to be ‘Litt up’ means to get to ready to go to battle or a mission! It is said in the sense of being all charged up to smash the opponent. ‘You just got me aaall Litt up!’
Usage – Last night’s party was lit!
Meaning – Have you heard of the phrase “on the down low”? If you have then that’s great, this has the exact same meaning. But if you haven’t, then fam that’s really not dope. Lowkey is used to describe something that is either on a small scale; not too flashy; to be kept secret or is minimal.
Usage – When you want to have a quiet gathering with your friends you could ask them, “Hey guys! Let’s chill at my place tonight but can we keep it lowkey?”
10. On fleek
Meaning – This is a term that was originally used to describe ‘perfectly shaped’ eyebrows and means to be on point/very good.
Usage – Girl, your outfit is on fleek! The term “fleeky” means the same.
Meaning – This word is on this list because it obviously isn’t solely linked to food anymore. It is now used to describe anyone who is agitated, angry, upset or grudging.
Usage – Are you still salty about last night? Let it go, she made a mistake.
Honestly, we are living in great times! Now, you can be salty about your food being salty!
Meaning – To ship two people doesn’t literally mean to ship them to a different country, even if that’s what you want to do sometimes. It is derived from ‘relationship’ and is usually used by fans to show their support or approval of a romantic relationship between characters.
Usage – I ship Ross and Rachel. (We shipped them before shipping was even a thing!)
Meaning – It means to be surprised, shocked or scared.
Usage – Can you believe my parents allowed me to go on the road trip?? I’m shook!
Meaning – When one slays, one successfully executes or dominates a task. It is used in the same way ‘killed it’ is used, for e.g.: You killed it on the dance floor!
Millennials Usage – Beyoncé slays every performance of hers!
Meaning – To be socially and politically aware and having the knowledge of the ins and outs of the topic being discussed at hand. It is the exact opposite of being ignorant.
Usage – If you want to make a real difference in this world, get woke and stay woke.
So how many words did you already know? Which one is your favorite? Which one are you going to start using immediately?
If you’ve read this far, consider yourself woke and don’t be so shook if you didn’t know any of this before, fam. Once you get rolling, your vocab will be lit! But for now, keep things lowkey and chill. Share this dope article with your friends. Until next time, we’re gonna bounce!
Imagine blurting out a word and not knowing the true meaning. These definitely can be added to a list of t sorts. To further reduce your embarrassment around Millennials, check out our article on words you should avoid when in Germany.