Ready for Right Now.

3 Dec
(photo courtesy of mscareergirl.com)

(photo courtesy of mscareergirl.com)

I recently finished this work which has both inspired me and left me with a handful of questions. It was a great read that highlights effectively the importance of why 20-something -year-olds need to capitalize on the NOW. Why this is not the decade  leading up to when young adults need to get serious about their lives but the decade when being serious and planning ahead count the most. This is the time when young adults need to do everything in our power to set up a solid foundation for ourselves, and where the moves we make will most certainly reflect in the next decade. This is the time where we can yes, afford to explore, but we cannot afford to slack. And with over a decade of work in this field psychologist Dr. Meg Jay illustrates these points beautifully- this work really got through to me being a 20-something myself.

However, it still left me pondering on the “how?” What are the concrete steps we, as young adults looking forward to the rest of our lives, can make to secure ourselves? With everything going on in the job market, the school financial crises and our ever-changing economy- what are some of the things we can do to set ourselves up for success in the best way possible? How can we be more prepared? In in light of the financial crises going on with colleges, how can we do that in lieu of some of us having mountains of college debt?

Now, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that Dr. Jay did indirectly address this issue. She gave plenty of examples of where young adults can make effective changes in our lives now that’ll have a positive pay off later. But I really wanted this book to go deeper. I wanted to hear about programs and skills we can capitalize on. Would it be okay for a 20-something year old with no other major financial commitment to take a year or so and travel the world? Can we still join bands and bar hop and casually date and still be in the running for  success later? How can we successfully balance these things out? Or are these experiences we need to forego altogether?

And what about those of us who do have children already? Or who can’t afford higher education? What about young adults who’ve just come over from a foreign country trying to gain a better professional and educational life? Does that leave a portion of America’s young adult population out of the success factor? I wonder about the people who fall through the cracks or who’s live don’t fit into the average college-age student’s criteria.

Maybe this is what Dr.Jay wanted. Maybe the purpose behind this book was not only to dispel a societal cliche (“30 is the new 20”) but also to get the conversations started on how young people in America NEED to use this time as a preparation for what we all hope will come:  a success story. A chance to say we made it.

Check out this TED talk below from the author Dr.Meg Jay: “Why 30 is not the new 20”

 

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