Younger workers opting to work less or to put in only the minimum effort may pay a future price in terms of stagnation or downward mobility. Workers receive the most pay raises in their twenties and thirties. This is also when people acquire the skills and contacts that pay off for the rest of their careers. One’s early years are not an ideal time to stay away from work, even considering the challenges that today’s younger workers face. Some jobs are certainly harder than others—especially when you’re learning skills and occupy a low rung in the workplace hierarchy. But opting out early only makes it more likely that work won’t get better later on.