The Defining Decade by Meg Jay, Ph.D.

I have read my fair share of literature on millennials, emerging adults, twentysomethings, or whatever people want to call them. Though I find the subject fascinating, now I am somewhat bored by the subject. Every article and book paints a less than rosy picture of this young generation. They are called weak, impatient, entitled, sensitive, and doomed to inherit a terribly uncertain future.

Now these descriptions and predictions may be accurate proven through qualitative, quantitative, and anecdotal studies, however the leave us with a problem with no solution.

This is where the Defining Decade by Dr. Meg Jay comes in. This is easily the best book I have read all year. Dr. Meg Jay is a clinical psychologist that has studied and helped numerous twentysomethings over the past decade. This book shares the common problems all twentysomethings go through today, how each person looked at the problems, and how each person re-evaluated their twenties.

This book is split into three sections: work, love, and brain and body.

Work is a common problem for twentysomethings. Most have been told they are special and they can do anything they want. Yet when they reach college they are overwhelmed with the responsibility of choosing a major and consequently they are incapable of choosing a vocation. Most would rather wander until someone comes by (after they turn thirty) and leads them to a promising career.

Love, like work, is another commitment that scares twentysomethings. They do not want to commit too young or wait until they are too old. Our culture glorifies the single life of twentysomethings, but it never shares the struggles. College is created with a strong curriculum to prepare you for the working world, however there are no approved methods of finding a soul mate.

Though twentysomethings are finished with the ravages of puberty, their brains and bodies are still developing. The world perceived by a twentysomething is much different than someone in their thirties or forties. Twentysomethings do not feel like adults so they avoid the grown up world, but in order to grow up they need to jump into adult world.

“Thirty is the new twenty” is the worst saying ever. Your twenties are the most valuable decade of your life, but you have to be intentional about it. “You twenties matter.”

Be intentional.

And read this great book.