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

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

by Meg Jay


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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.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780446561754
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Publication date: 04/02/2013
Pages: 239
Sales rank: 3,861
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Meg Jay, PhD, is a clinical psychologist who specializes in adult development, and twentysomethings in particular. She is an assistant clinical professor at University of Virginia, and maintains a private practice in Charlottesville, Virginia. Dr. Jay earned a doctorate in clinical psychology, and in gender studies, from University of California, Berkeley.

Table of Contents

Preface: The Defining Decade xi

Introduction: Real Time xiii


Identity Capital 3

Weak Ties 17

The Unthought Known 32

My Life Should Look Better on Facebook 41

The Customized Life 55


An Upmarket Conversation 69

Picking Your Family 81

The Cohabitation Effect 89

On Dating Down 100

Being in Like 112

The Brain And The Body

Forward Thinking 133

Calm Yourself 143

Outside In 156

Getting Along and Getting Ahead 165

Every Body 175

Do the Math 188

Epilogue: Will Things Work Out for Me? 199

Notes 203

Acknowledgments 237

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