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The Change Generation: Milestones, big decisions and the time of your life

For the next three months, we shine a spotlight on a period of huge change for Irish adults.

Baby had the time of her life and she made some pretty big decisions that summer.
Baby had the time of her life and she made some pretty big decisions that summer.
Image: Dirty Dancing via Great American Films Ltd

HUMANS ARE NATURAL problem solvers. Every day is a constant series of decisions – even deciding to stay in bed and stick your head under the duvet (tempting) is a choice.

The small decisions, we take for granted. At least some of those items on your ‘to do’ list need to be ticked off in order for you to make it to the end of the day.

Bigger decisions, however, we sometimes delay. This is because we can sense the long-term impact of them and the difficulty of working through the different options.

This is also a challenging time for the average Irish adult. The country has been through a tough time, we understand the instability of the world, and yet it keeps turning and we have to get on with it.

So TheJournal.ie has made a decision of its own: to focus on the key period of decision-making in the Irish adult’s life, from leaving the parental nest to setting up a home of one’s own.Partnering with KBC, this three-month series chronicles the challenges facing this generation and supports better decisions through informative and entertaining journalism.

Each month – September, October and November – shines a spotlight on the demographic (from 18 to late 30s)  into which three of the major adult life milestones and decision-making periods are all concentrated.

1. This month, we kick off with the generation “declaring independence”.

These are the newly-minted adults hitting college and the workforce, learning to live outside the family structure, make decisions that might affect their future career and life opportunities – all while trying to have a good time and forge a new network of support and relationships.

We delve into four of the areas of biggest change for this section of society:

The new nest - One of the biggest transitions to adulthood for many people is marked by a physical move away from the family home. We will look at psychological coping methods, practical tips on picking the right housemates and craft your guide to the essential kit for feeling at home in your new life.

Balancing the budget - Smart and relatable advice and plans to help first-timers get to grips with the costs of living (especially the hidden costs!)

Staying well - The excitement of setting out into the world might be wearing off and reality setting in. This is when we will give you a check-in point on keeping your head straight and peer-to-peer advice from those who have been through it.

Making it work for your future - We examine the impact decisions made now around career can impact on future earning potential, job satisfaction and work-life balance.

2. In October, we will zoom in on those taking steps towards commitment – to a new home, to a relationship or to achieving a more mature work-life-passion balance.

3. In November, it is the turn of those making decisions around the rest of their adult life, planning for the future, rethinking their current career/education, gearing up for a family of one’s own.

Stay tuned and in the meantime, find some inspiration from this excellent TED talk on setting up a framework for making big life decisions:

Source: TED/YouTube

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