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The Defining Decade: Why Your Twenties…
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The Defining Decade: Why Your Twenties Matter--And How to Make the Most of… (edition 2012)

by Meg Jay

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974124,414 (4.04)5
Member:jasmeyer
Title:The Defining Decade: Why Your Twenties Matter--And How to Make the Most of Them Now
Authors:Meg Jay
Info:Twelve (2012), Edition: 1, Hardcover, 272 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:2012, non-fiction, NPR, Diane Rehm

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The Defining Decade: Why Your Twenties Matter--And How to Make the Most of Them Now by Meg Jay

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Yup, I read this book. It was good and informative.

But I have to say, the main thing it told me was the stuff I already knew. Which, to be fair, I maybe needed to be told again. But that was the fault of a lot of adults in my network (not my parents, to be clear) making sure I know that I'm still young, and it's fine to have fun, and blah blah blah.

That has always irritated me, because I have always felt like I was missing out. I have never heard my parents regret having a family so young or talk about the things they could have done if they had spent their 20s the way I have spent a good chunk of mine.

Seriously, listen to the people who you know who are in their twenties and decide if they sound happy to you. Compare the ones who are on a solid career path with those who are blundering around trying to figure things out. Because this whole "being young, having fun" thing is way overrated.

And this book is all about that. It's all about young twenty-something people who are torn between all of these cliches and ideas that are fed to them by older influences, like parents, employers, etc. For example, "you can be anything you want," which at some point just makes people feel like they can't be anything, or "You should be having fun!" which makes people think that by partying and taking it easy all the time, they are doing what they are supposed to be doing, even if they don't feel remotely fulfilled.

So basically this book reinforced everything that I already thought/believed but was starting to think I was being unrealistic about, mainly because everybody I know, peers and older role models (not to mention a couple of people I did informational interviews with) said that I shouldn't worry and everything will work out and blah blah blah.

So, you know. This book is good. Recommended, even. ( )
  GraceZ | Sep 6, 2014 |
Excellent book for young men and women. Should be required reading for all college students. ( )
  libq | Mar 25, 2014 |
In my mind, this book is a must-read for twenty-somethings. Meg Jay, a psychologist specializing in adult development, illuminates some of the important, life-changing elements of our twenties, using real-life patients as examples. Jay talks about how our twenties set the stage for the rest of our lives and are the time to actively plan for the lives we want rather than expecting that everything will just fall into place. Our twenties do matter, even though society has viewed this decade more and more as an extended adolescence rather than real adulthood. ( )
  ReadHanded | Apr 25, 2013 |
This one was extremely good, and I'd recommend it to anyone who's in their twenties or generally interested in the topic. It's the perfect mix of advice, scientific studies, and individual anecdotes, all presented in a very readable style. There are just so many thought-provoking issues discussed here, and it manages to provide useful guidance in an optimistic way. For example, Jay talks about the issue of what people are supposed to be doing career-wise in their twenties: we constantly hear that life is starting later, so maybe our twenties don't matter, and we should just be exploring the world or working at an easy minimal-wage job while hanging out with our friends? Well, no. Everything we do right now is still building the foundation for our future lives, and even though the process takes longer, that doesn't mean we shouldn't get started. Everything we do contributes in some way to who we're going to become. Jay also talks about the particular time crunch facing women who hope to establish themselves in good careers and also have children: there's not necessarily time to do it all later, because fertility declines rapidly. On a similar note, she advises against cohabitation before engagement, because that leads to a sort of slipping into a permanent relationship, rather than making an active decision; the hindrances to leaving accumulate, and as you get older you figure you might as well get married, and that doesn't always lead to the best results. Again, what we do now matters, and we should be doing it consciously. It was refreshing to see someone actually address these issues and talk about the best way to proceed, as opposed to the general lamenting about twenty-somethings that I generally seem to read about. Again, highly recommended. ( )
1 vote _Zoe_ | Nov 21, 2012 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0446561762, Hardcover)

Our "thirty-is-the-new-twenty" culture tells us the twentysomething years don't matter. Some say they are a second adolescence. Others call them an emerging adulthood. Dr. Meg Jay, a clinical psychologist, argues that twentysomethings have been caught in a swirl of hype and misinformation, much of which has trivialized what is actually the most defining decade of adulthood.

Drawing from a decade of work with hundreds of twentysomething clients and students, THE DEFINING DECADE weaves the latest science of the twentysomething years with behind-closed-doors stories from twentysomethings themselves. The result is a provocative read that provides the tools necessary to make the most of your twenties, and shows us how work, relationships, personality, social networks, identity, and even the brain can change more during this decade than at any other time in adulthood-if we use the time wisely.

THE DEFINING DECADE is a smart, compassionate and constructive book about the years we cannot afford to miss.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:52:20 -0400)

Describes why the twenties can be the most defining decade of adulthood and offers tips on making the most of work and relationships during this still-formative time in a person's life.

(summary from another edition)

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