Is setting goals as important for young people as they say?

A widely held assumption is that changes in one’s goals and motives for life during emerging and young adulthood have lasting influences on well-being into adulthood. However, this claim has yet to receive rigorous empirical testing. The current study examined the effects of prosocial and occupational goal change during college on adult well-being in a 17-year study of goal setting (N = 416). Using a latent growth model across three time points, both level and growth in goal setting predicted later well-being. Moreover, goal changes both during college and in young adulthood uniquely predicted adult well-being, controlling for goal levels entering college. These findings suggest that what matters for attaining adult well-being is both how you enter adulthood and how you change in response to it.

Source: “Change You Can Believe In, Changes in Goal Setting During Emerging and Young Adulthood Predict Later Adult Well-Being” from Social Psychological and Personality Science

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