The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
During one of my many Instagram scrolling sessions, I came across something stating that more people in their 20s are experiencing a “quarter-life crisis” than ever before. As someone who’s been feeling lost and unsure lately after turning twenty this month, I came to realize this feeling isn’t one I’m experiencing alone. I brought up the topic to many of my friends who have just entered their 20s and soon came to realize this is a universal feeling. We all feel lost and confused. It made me question why this is and how we can prevent it. So, I sat down and really thought about this idea, coming up with a few ways in which others, as well as myself, can try to feel better about experiencing a quarter-life crisis.
One of the many things creating this idea of a quarter-life crisis is the feeling that nobody knows what to do with their lives. Very early in life, we’re expected to choose a post-secondary program that will lead us to a specific career path. However, this idea of choosing one job at such a young age to do for the rest of your life is daunting and, quite honestly, unrealistic. I read somewhere that you change the most in your 20s– it’s the age in which most people meet their lifelong partners, move away and make long-lasting friendships. You learn so much about yourself in your 20s, which will eventually change who you are and how you act along the way. Therefore, you may experience new things and come to realize what you do and don’t like. This will, in turn, bring you along a path to decide what you want to do as a career. So don’t stress– you’ve only lived approximately 25% of your life and it’s the portion of your life that is the most caged and controlled. If you think about it, you’ve lived at home, going to school and seen the same people nearly every day, for the majority of your life. You haven’t experienced life yet, so how can you make the decision as to what you want to dedicate your life to?
Another aspect of my quarter-life crisis is coming to the realization that I’m no longer a child. I have a plethora of responsibilities on my shoulders now, ones that I’ve never had to think about before. One aspect of this is the current economic state we’re living in. The fact that groceries have increased by over 10% in price is stressful enough, but now there are bills to pay and necessities to purchase. Balancing school, work, social life, health and finance is an extremely difficult thing for a young person to do and something I see many of my friends in their 20s worrying about. This leads to unwanted stress and extreme doubt in a person’s ability to succeed in life. One way in which I allow myself to calm down about this is to remember money comes and goes and everything will somehow work itself out. If you put hard work into life, life will reward you and everything will end up alright in the end.
Being able to relate to people is an extremely powerful way to feel calmer about your current situation. If you’re anxious about where you are in life, feel lost or are in need of direction in life, talk to others around you. I guarantee others feel the same way and there is power in numbers. Feeling lost is scary, but feeling alone can be scarier. Nobody is alone in the feeling of being lost in their 20s; it’s a normal part of life, despite it feeling like you’re the only one who feels this way. Nobody knows what they’re doing and even the ones who think they have it all figured out will be faced with so many bumps in the road along the way and I guarantee they’ll end up in a different place in life than they’ve planned. The key to powering through your quarter-life crisis is to accept it, experience as many things as possible and live your life as open to new experiences and possibilities as you can. This way, you’ll open up and find what you truly love in life and the person you really are. Only after that will you feel secure and safe in where you’re headed in life. Remember, you’re not alone in this and everything works out in the end.