Being a Twenty-Something Year Old


A few Sundays ago, I was making the hour and a half drive back from my family’s farm to the small town in which I now work and reside.  As I was driving, I was listening to the TED talk hour on NPR -Yes, I listen to talk radio shows.  Sometimes I really crave an intelligent conversation.  It brings out my inner nerdness.  Anyways, on that particular day Meg Jay was on discussing being a twenty-something year old and her book The Defining Decade: Why Your Twenties Matter and How to Make the Most of the Now.  As I listened I realized that I was so much like many of the twenty-something year old clients she discussed.  I was playing out the “you will be a lot better at this in a few years” and “give it a few years” advice.  I was using the twenties as a delay decade that would some how get me to my dream job by the time I am thirty.  I was going through every day wondering how to make ends meet, who I was supposed to be, if I was in the right field and when exactly I was going to wake up and be who I want to be.  I found myself envious of friends from high school and college that were posting on Facebook about getting married, having babies, landing spots at good schools for graduate school, landing dream jobs and traveling.  I always wondered what they had that I didn’t.  Why was I stuck in a job that I like one day, but hate the next; in the middle of no where without any time, or money, to travel anywhere; and living a single life?  Needless to say, I ordered the book and started reading it.  It was chalk full of advice that I took to heart and realized that if I really wanted that dream job by the time I was thirty I needed to implement it.  As I read, I found that so many times I thought “why had no one told me this in college?” and “I wish I would have read this in college.”  I have not yet finished the book, but have come to the conclusions that yes, the twenties aren’t going to be easy and no, they are not just a decade in which the “give it a few years” advice should be used.  These years are also not the “waiting period” for adulthood.  I am not going to wake up at thirty and be magically sitting in the office I want.  If I want that to happen, I have to “make my twenties matter now.”  With that being said, I am now completely convinced that the twenties are in fact the “defining decade.”  I truly recommend this book to any twenty-something year old and have actually already purchased it for a twenty-something year old friend of mine in which we discuss how tired we are of being in the twenties.  It is a book in which I find myself reading several times and reaching for a highlighter to underline passages and advice that I can refer back to.  So, are you a twenty-something year old?  If so, this book is something you might want to put on your must-read list.     

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