Meg Jay: Why 30 is NOT the New 20

I post way too many of my favorite inspirational quotes and links to articles and videos on all my social media platforms, so I’m most likely THAT annoying idealistic person on Facebook that inundates everyone’s Facebook newsfeed, but I feel strongly about the significance of this particular TED Talks video I saw today by Meg Jay, especially concerning people in my demographic. Every 20-something person should know these things. It explains the 3 things that 20-somethings, male or female, deserve to hear:

1. “Forget about having an identity crisis, and get some identity capital. Do something that adds value to who you are. Do something that might be an investment in who you might want to be next. Identity capital begets identity capital. So, now is the time for that cross-country job, that internship, that start-up you want to try. Don’t discount 20-something exploration, but do discount exploration that’s not supposed to count. It is not exploration; It’s procrastination. Explore work, and make it count.”

2. “The urban tribe is overrated. 20-somethings who huddle together with like-minded peers limit who they know, what they know, how they think, how they speak, and where they work. That new piece of capital, that new person to date almost always comes from outside the inner circle. New things come from what are called our weak ties: our friends of friends of friends. Half of 20-somethings are unemployed or underemployed, but half are not. Half of new jobs are never posted, so reaching out to your neighbor’s boss is how you get that un-posted job. It’s not cheating; It’s the science of how information spreads.”

3. “The time to start picking your family is now. 30 may be a better time to get married than 20 or 25, but grabbing whoever you’re living with or sleeping with when everyone on Facebook walks down the aisle is NOT progress. The best time to work on your marriage is BEFORE you have one. This means being as intentional with love as you are with work. Picking your family is about consciously choosing who and what you want rather than just making it work or killing time with whoever happens to be choosing you.”


  • “At 21, 25 or even 29, one good conversation, one good break, one good TED Talk, can have an enormous effect across years, and even generations to come.”
  • “30 is not the new 20, so claim your adulthood, get some identity capital, use your weak ties, pick your family. Don’t be defined by what you didn’t know or didn’t do. You’re deciding your life right now.”

This TED Talk by Dr. Meg Jay really struck a chord in me, and I hope it has with you if you weren’t living by this philosophy already. =)

❤ Angelie


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