I’ve been hearing a lot recently about something called the quarter life crisis, a new phenomenon that affects many young adults in my generation. With the average adult holding over a dozen jobs in his or her life and making career changes multiple times, it’s safe to say that for most, the midlife crisis isn’t enough. We change our minds like we change clothes and follow our passions as they change, even if it means making a significant career move. But the quarter life crisis doesn’t just have to deal with work; we frequently reevaluate who we are as people. I’ve been dealing with my own quarter life crisis and find it a very stressful, uncomfortable and scary place to be. I always had a plan: get the scholarships, go to college, graduate in four years, start climbing the corporate ladder. Study abroad changed all of that and flipped my life plan on its head. I met people who made me reevaluate who I was and the type of person I wanted to be. I had experiences that completely changed my view of the world. Things that were important to me didn’t seem so important anymore. I literally began to feel the weight of the world and realized I didn’t want to place borders on my life. I don’t want to live a linear life; I want to branch out!
If you’re having a quarter life crisis, here are some things that might ease your mind:
- You aren’t alone. Two thirds of young adults ages 25 to 35 will experience a similar situation.
- 80 percent of people feel better on the other side of their crisis and are more satisfied with their lives.
- This is the safest time in your life to have an identity crisis. You’re young with relatively limited responsibilities and only yourself to look after. Take advantage of it!
I still don’t know what I want to do with my life, but I’m fairly certain I know what I don’t. I’m learning the things that are important to me and exploring options for career paths that incorporate those things. I’m learning to embrace uncertainty and to follow the path I’m on without trying to figure out where it ends. I have faith that if I keep listening to my heart and exploring my passions, I’ll end up on the other side of my crisis with a much clearer picture of who I want to be.
Have you had a quarter life crisis? What have you found helpful in navigating through it?
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