Hong Kong’s Gen Z faces mental health and financial challenges

The pandemic-fuelled work landscape is pushing Hong Kong's Gen Z to the brink, with 44% grappling with work-life balance.
By: | September 7, 2023

Hong Kong’s Gen Z is facing an array of challenges when it comes to mental health and financial stability.

According to the second phase of the annual AXA Study of Mind Health and Wellbeing 2023, only one in 10 Gen Z respondents in Hong Kong reported flourishing mental health, in contrast to the one in five ratios found among the overall respondents. Moreover, 67.2% of Gen Z respondents admitted to experiencing moderate to extreme stress over the past year, marking a 14% increase compared to the overall respondent pool, which stood at 53.1%.

The study also underscored how the evolving work landscape, exacerbated by the pandemic, has perpetuated an “always-on” culture. Among employed Gen Z respondents, 44% admitted to struggling with work-life balance, finding it challenging to delineate professional responsibilities from personal life. Furthermore, 40% cited distress due to the hours they were expected to work.

Andrea Wong, Chief Marketing and Customer Officer, AXA Hong Kong and Macau, said, “The findings of the AXA Mind Health Study underscore the need to enhance the overall wellbeing of Gen Z individuals in Hong Kong. While this group is more vulnerable to stress and can experience negative emotions in a tech-saturated world, there are steps that young people can take to improve their mind health, including setting technology boundaries, improving time management, creating a healthy work-life balance, as well as spending quality time with families and friends.”

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The study also shed light on the financial aspirations and challenges faced by Hong Kong’s younger generation. 38% of Gen Z respondents in the city expressed their desire to “become rich” as their primary wish, eclipsing the 18% who prioritise achieving perfect physical health. This financial focus, however, comes with its own set of stressors, as 44% of Gen Z respondents reported that their current financial situation caused them stress, and only 30% felt secure about their financial future.