The game has tilted toward youth, in yet one more way. You who are 18 through 30 have been found, for the first time in 40 years, to be happier than those over-30.
And if you believe in the Secret, that is the Law of Attraction, you are better positioned for life's goodies, both professional and personal. Happiness is a magnet that pulls in allies, intimates, and acquaintances eager to be part of your circles.
Happiness creates more happiness. Unhappiness usually becomes the platform for a downward trajectory.
In MarketWatch, Catey Hill reports:
"'Adults over 30 are less happy than their predecessors,' concludes a study published online Thursday in the journal Social Psychology and Personality Science, which examined happiness data from more than 50,000 adults, gleaned from the General Social Survey, carried out by NORC at the University of Chicago ..."
Experts don't know the reason for this huge shift in a sense of well-being. Usually, youth was a tough phase of life to get through. It involved so many rites of passage. Those ranged from getting into a good school and through it to launching a career. Often it wasn't until after age 30 that adults could settle in - and enjoy life and their success.
In this age of disruption, though, there is no settling in. A new technology can knock us out of the career box. Sure that happens to youth, as well as the middle-aged. The critical difference is that youth believes time in on your side after a career setback. That creates optimism, which encourages investing in The Next.
Those in middle age know time isn't on our side. Age bias is a reality in professional life. Also, while we have to put together The Next, we simultaneously may have major financial and personal responsibilities to juggle. Those result from rites of passage such as marriage, parenthood, and buying a house.
In my 20s, I was already on my second career. When that - social work - proved not to be a good fit, I scrambled. But I knew I would land on my feet. I did. My new career path was communications.
In my 50s, when the market for my specific service tanked, I became undone. So far I haven't made the big money I had before the reversal. It could be the economy. It could be age. But I have a hunch it has been because I didn't believe I could not only fully recover from professional adversity but also create a more lucrative career path than before.