THE NEW YORK TIMES SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 212014 SR GRAY MATTER LAURENCE STEINBERG The Case for Delayed Adulthood surround themselves with novel and in- proliferate and their intellectual devel- opment remains especially sensitive to NE of the most notable demo- tellectually demanding experiences in raphic trends of the last two decades has been the delayed experience It's important to be exposed the workplace But generally this is entry of young people into adulthood According to a large-scale national study conducted since the late 1970s it has taken longer for each suc- to novelty and challenge when the brain is plastic not only because this is how we acquire and strengthen skills but also because this is how the brain en- more difficult to accomplish on the job than in school especially in entry-level positions which typically have a learn ing curve that hits a plateau early on Laurence cessive generation to finish school es- hances its ability to profit from future Alas something similar is true of Steinberg a marriage For many after its initial nov elty has worn off marriage fosters a lifestyle that is more routine and pre- dictable than being single does Hus bands and wives both report a sharp drop in marital satisfaction during the first few years after their wedding in tablish financial independence marry enriching experiences and have children Today's 25-year-olds With this in mind the lengthy pas- professor of psychology at mple University is the author of compared with their parents' genera- tion at the same age are twice as likely to still be students only half as likely to be married and 50 percent more likely to be receiving financial assistance from sage into adulthood that characterizes the early 20s for so many people today starts to look less regrettable Indeed those who can prolong adolescence ac- tually have an advantage as long as geof Opportunity their environment gives them continpart because life becomes repetitive A People tend to react to this trend in ued stimulation and increasing chal longer period of dating with all the un- their parents Lessons From the euw Science of one of two ways either castigating to- lenges predictability and change that come Adolescence day's young people for their idleness or What do I mean by stimulation and with a cast of new partners may be bet ter for your brain than marriage acknowledging delayed adulthood as a rational if regrettable response to a va- challenges? The most obvious example is higher education which has been If brain plasticity is maintained by riety of social changes like poor job shown to stimulate brain development staying engaged in new demanding and prospects Either way postponing the in ways that simply getting older does cognitively stimulating activity and if not College attendance pays neural as ettled responsible patterns of adult- entering into the repetitive and less ex citing roles of worker and spouse helps close the window of plasticity delaying adulthood is not only ΟΚ it can be a boon hood is seen as a bad thing ell as economic dividends Naturally it is possible for people to This is too pessimistic Prolonged ad olescence in the right circumstances is actually a good thing for it foşters nov- elty-seeking and the acquisition of new go to college without exposing them- selves to challenge or conversely to skills Studies reveal adolescence to be a riod of heightened plasticity durin which the brain is highly influenced b experience As a result adolescence is Meme

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found ON 2018-04-29 06:29:43 BY me.me