"We have trivialized what is actually the defining decade of adulthood." - Meg Jay
In the Ted talk above clinical psychologist Meg Jay has a bold message for twentysomethings: Contrary to popular belief, your 20s are not a throwaway decade. She gives 3 pieces of advice for how twentysomethings can re-claim adulthood in the defining decade of their lives.
Leanard Bernsteing said, "To achieve great things you need a plan and not quote enough time."
Recently I've noticed friends of mine, who are in their thirties, are totally lost because they "partied their twenties away." Some of them are in their forties and are just now waking up to the idea that they "partied their thirties away." Now they want kids, direction, and partnership, yet many of them are dating men/women that have no interest in having children or getting married. Many of them are stuck in dead-end jobs and when I ask them, "what's the plan?" they say, "I'm playing it one day at a time." Each day goes by, and nothing seems to change. It's sad.
I often wonder what our lives would be like if more of us had a good kick in the ass in our twenties. What kind of people, and what kind of success, would we have if we had the right guidance early in life? It took me a while to get my shit together, and it was hard work, but I'm grateful that I pushed through the complacency. Focus takes action and bravery in a world wrought with distraction.
I guess I'm lucky. I never saw myself being married or having kids. I always thought of myself as the kind of woman that would strive in her art and work and have vast amounts of friends. I have achieved that. Lately I want more. Part of me would like to raise a child, not my own, but perhaps the child of a man who needs a good mother. Anything is possible. All in all I like my forties and have enjoyed living a rather full and kooky life.
The one thing I would have changed is to not take for granted how quickly time flies. I could have made a few better decisions with the right guidance, but there is no need for regret. Instead I'm finding better mentors to help make life a more conscious and focus my efforts in helping others do the same.
I guess the message I'm trying to convey is that you can do more than you think you're capable of. It's never to late to have a happy childhood, but it's also never to late to switch gears and enjoy being an adult at the same time.