Brady F. Anderson

The Defining Decade

My Notes

Weak ties to others are how you land jobs and create interesting opportunities. Your closest family and friends are your best resources, but they only have so many resources and connections to draw upon. You can set yourself up for success by area by reaching out to weaker connections which increases your surface area to access help, advice, career connections, lucky breaks, and experiences outside of your comfort zone

Be specific with your questions when talking with weaker connections (especially with networking). People don’t want to go out of their way just to hear some generic bs “what you’re supposed to ask” type of question.

Young adults must answer three big questions: what to do for a living, who to be with, and where to live. Certainty about one of these gives you the ability to narrow your focus and decision-making on the others. 

Young people can often make a few assumptions that inform their choices and how they judge themselves: that they need to spend a lot of time searching for things they want in their life, that time with friends should come before time with family, and that adventure away from your hometown is essential. Not that these are necessarily wrong, but they aren’t necessarily right for everyone either. It can feel alien to act in ways that challenge these assumptions.

Some in their twenties struggle to start a career out of fear of submitting to the status quo. They suffer from viewing saying yes to one opportunity as limiting their life. I call this infinite perceived opportunity cost. Opportunity cost captures the value of the next best alternative, not the combined value of all possible alternatives. You can’t have and do everything, so making a choice to start building momentum toward better opportunities is imperative.

Starting with unsexy work experience doesn’t have to be frightening. Cars, bikes, and just about everything come with some standard parts before you can modify them to your liking.

Interviewers buy into individuals with an articulate, compelling story about who they are.

Interviewers realize that their job may not be a dream job and that most don’t realize where their lives will be in five years. The real burden of an interview is to convince the firm that the job makes much more sense than just convenience.

60% of people in their twenties are looking for love and a committed relationship, despite what popular culture says.

After 25, one’s marriage age does not predict divorce.

Marrying gives people two new chances to form the kind of family they want. They form their own family with their partner and develop new relationships with a whole new extended family. Cherish both opportunities.

A common misperception: living together is a good test for marriage. Cohabitation is often an uncalculated choice and occurs out of convenience. “A life built on top of the “Maybe You’ll Do” of cohabitation simply may not feel as dedicated as a life built on top of the “We Do” of commitment or marriage.” (127)

Imposter syndrome is normal and healthy for early careers. You’re probably underemployed or arrogant if you don’t feel at least a little anxious. Confidence is something to be built

A common belief is that changing your job will change your feelings. This can be the case but isn’t necessarily so.

Use inversion to plan out your life. What do you need to do now to have kids at the age you want, get married at the age you want, retire at the age you want, and change into a different career later on?