Wednesday Wisdom: Is 20 really the new 30?

Often reiterated to youth over the past few decades, “20 is the new 30”, is heard less and less as a common statement. A TEDTalk from clinical psychologist Meg Jay outlines how 20-somethings can live more intentful lives by focusing on what’s really important now rather than later. She discusses the freedom that one might feel as a 20-something, contributing to a lack of urgency in one’s life. Are one’s 20s a time to relax or a time to be productive? It sounds like a simple question, but what Jay argues is that 20-somethings need to take a new direction of focus and get some identity capital: developing real-world skills that add value to oneself. It is a time when one’s brain is still developing, when positive patterns are established, and when one has the opportunity to make exploration count.

Critics twisted Jay’s words to render a negative connotation, where, in actuality, she is reminding 20-somethings that now is the time. There is no time to waste. How one responds to this talk directly correlates to the current status of one’s personal life; economic status, current age, and other factors. Many articles emerged arguing against Jay’s TEDTalk, pointing out how some 20-somethings are doing all that Jay states while feeling overly worried about their futures. On the contrary, others are unconcerned and would rather enjoy their time as a 20-something, in whatever way that may be.

Jay declares that one’s 20s are the “defining decade of adulthood.” Instead of drifting through college with no major life goals, make the decision now to explore what it means to make every decision with purpose. Claim your twenties and transform your life.

While one is in their 20s, it is vital to learn and explore one’s passions, live an intentful life, and make crucial decisions about one’s future. Check out the TEDTalk to learn more.

“Forget identity crisis; get identity capital” – Meg Jay


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