third decade of life, positive development, arrested development, emerging adulthood
There is a growing body of literature that suggests that the third decade of life is anything but a time to foster positive development. Indeed, emerging adulthood has been referred to as a time of arrested development during which young people avoid responsibilities that are thought to be typical of adulthood (Cote, 2000), and instead engage in behaviors they feel they will not be able to enjoy once they become adults (e.g., travel, exploration of substance use and sexual experience, living a carefree life-style; Ravert, 2009). Emerging adults have been referred to as "Generation Me" and are increasingly typified as narcissistic, self-absorbed, and unhappy (Twenge, 2006). In a book focusing on emerging adults, Smith (2011) characterized young people as generally lost in transition, a condition reflected in their moral confusion, risk behaviors, materialism, and disengagement. In sum, the stereotypical emerging adult is one who is experiencing a general failure to launch into the adult world.
Original Publication Citation
Padilla-Walker, L. M., & Nelson, L. J. (2017). Flourishing in emerging adulthood: An understudied approach to the third decade of life. In L. M. Padilla-Walker and L. J. Nelson (Eds.), Flourishing in emerging adulthood: Positive development during the third decade of life, pp. 3-13. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Padilla-Walker, Laura M. and Nelson, Larry J., "Flourishing in Emerging Adulthood: An Understudied Approach to the Third Decade of Life" (2017). Faculty Publications. 4715.
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