Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Mt Holyoke chapter.

The trend began, as so many do, with Taylor Swift. The music icon is known for rebranding herself for each of her albums. This has led to her fans saying things like “I’m in my Reputation era” whenever they embody the aesthetic or energy of an album. Swift’s albums are so well-known that this quickly became a trend, and it took on a life outside of Taylor Swift. 

Any word or phrase can go in front of “era” now and others will understand how your life is going at the moment. Now, people can look down on this new slang, as people often do. Saying, “It’s not a phase, mom” was a popular way for emo or goth teenagers to legitimize their aesthetic. But is a “phase” or “era” an inherently bad thing? I think this particular trend is deeper than your average slang.

Defining our lives by eras implies a state of impermanence. My life could change into another era at any point. In short, life is full of change. I know I struggle with accepting that, and many others do too. But when I think of my life in terms of eras I have lived through and enjoyed, it helps me personally feel much less sad about what has changed.

Accepting that my life is impermanent helps me feel more comfortable with change and enjoy the present without worrying about the future. It also is very freeing to think, just because I am enjoying something now, that does not mean I have to like it or be defined by it for the rest of my life.

And just because my life is ever changing, that does not mean that each stage is not important. It is actually quite the opposite. When I can face the reality that my life is constantly changing, I realize that the rough periods are not forever. Also in that light, the good times seem more special. Stating what era of my life I’m living in now validates how important that period is to me.

Whatever era I am in, I am determined to enjoy it and value it just as much as the others. 

Her Campus Placeholder Avatar
Nicole Fitzpatrick

Mt Holyoke '25