Psychologist Urges Young People, ‘Don’t Waste Your Twenties’

.“… Claiming your twenties is one of the simplest, yet most transformative things you can do for work, for love, for your happiness – maybe even for the world. This is not my opinion – these are the facts. We know that 80% of life’s most defining moments take place by age 35. That means that eight out of ten of the decisions and the experiences and ‘a-ha’ moments that make your life what it is will have happened by your mid-thirties.”

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“… We know that the brain caps off its second and last growth spurt in your twenties as it rewires itself for adulthood – which means whatever it is you want to change about yourself, now is the time to change it.”

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“… The stakes are very high – when a lot has been pushed to your thirties there is enormous ‘thirty-something pressure’ to jump-start a career, pick a city, partner up and have two or three kids in a much shorter period of time. Many of these things [are] incompatible, and, as research is just starting to show, simply harder and more stressful to do all at once in our thirties. The post-millennial mid-life crisis isn’t buying a red sports car – it’s realizing you can’t have that career you now want. It’s realizing you can’t have that child you now want, or you can’t give your child a sibling. Too many thirty-somethings or forty-somethings look at themselves … and say about their twenties, ‘What was I doing? What was I thinking?”

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“… I’m not discounting twenty-something exploration here, but I am discounting exploration that’s not supposed to count – which, by the way, is not exploration, but procrastination.”

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“… The best time to work on your marriage is before you have one.”

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“… At 21 or 25 or even 29, one good conversation, one good break, one good TEDTalk, can have an enormous effect across years and even generations to come. So here’s an idea worth spreading to every twenty-something you know … thirty is not the new twenty … don’t be defined by what you didn’t know or didn’t do. You’re deciding your life right now.”

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2 thoughts on “Psychologist Urges Young People, ‘Don’t Waste Your Twenties’

  1. jimhwoodell says:

    Thanks for sharing. Good stuff.

  2. Terry Rush says:

    Really useful.

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