The bio: Megan Tan is the host and producer of “Millennial,” a radio documentary about maneuvering your 20s—and embracing the discomfort that comes with it.
How I found her: I discovered my love for podcasts only in 2016, when out of curiosity (and boredom with the same artists I was listening to) I checked out that section of Spotify. The first podcast I ever listened to was fun and cool enough, but I felt like I needed something that would speak to me at that time. I just got out of college then and was unemployed. I felt uneasy thinking about this scary period vaguely called the future. Seeing some of my batchmates update their work description on Facebook—I’ll be very honest—put a ton of pressure on me. So, while I was searching for the perfect podcast, the name showed up. And being naturally drawn to anything that attempts to define this generation I am proudly part of, I clearly had no reason not to listen.
Why she makes the Internet a better place: Because she has no filter. In this day and age where everyone has some sort of personal branding to build through curated posts of their carefully presented selves, it’s refreshing to find someone who presents her raw self to the point that she almost becomes vulnerable in the process. I remember listening to one of her podcast episodes while riding a bus to Manila to start my first day on my first job. It was nighttime, it was really cold, and the view outside the window was a dreamy backdrop. In the episode, she was talking about deciding between choosing a job offer or her own passion project (the podcast itself), and I just sat there staring at luminous lights, wanting to cry happy tears about how accurate she describes the self-doubt, discomfort, anxiety, and everything else that I also felt in my own journey.
What she taught me: Let’s face it. Adulthood is never going to be easy. Actually, you know what? It might only get scarier year after year, and this whole figuring out thing never ends. But here’s something we can hold on to: We’re all in the same boat. Like Megan, a lot of us feel the same fears every now and then. Ever looked at your Instagram feed and felt a little jealous about how other people live such fabulous lives, and you’re there being unproductive spending half of your day in social media? News flash! Those fabulous people feel the same fears, too. (Except Beyoncé. Probably.)
Also, there’s the beauty of going after what excites you, regardless of what people believe you are capable of doing. It’s a bonus that I have a background in journalism and Megan herself practiced photojournalism and had the same dilemma of whether or not she should join a publication like her peers would expect. And her choosing her risky passion for radio (She started recording the whole thing in her closet!) over the safe, expected choice inspired me to always go after what I really want—which is not very clear at this time, but I am slowly discovering in every major step.
The major takeaway: This whole journey of achieving our #goals will most likely be frustrating, but we’ll get by. After all, we’re the “entitled” generation who were told by our parents we could do anything we set our minds to 😉
Where you can find her: @meganleetan or @millennialpdcst on Twitter; millennialpodcast.org for the website
What you should check out as soon as you finish reading this: Season 1 of the podcast! It will always be my favorite since it’s very personal and it really hits close to home.
How I Met My Mentor is a series of posts about individuals who have provided no-nonsense and awe-inspiring content amid the noise polluting the World Wide Web. It is my hope that these so-called digital mentors serve as a reminder that there is no such thing as “too much internet” when you’re talking about great content.
If you have a digital mentor in mind whose work you think should be shared with the world, shoot me an email using the contact form embedded in this website.