There are a lot of 20/30somethings that have self declared that they are experiencing a quarter life crisis. If you haven’t heard the term yet you can read more about it here.
Three common questions that seem to be most associated with this syndrome are:
- What am I going to do with my life?
- How do I figure it all out?
- How do I get my s**t together?
As someone who is constantly told that I “seem to have ‘it’ all figured out” and that I “seem to have it together,” I’d like to tackle these questions.
What Should I Do With My Life?
This question implies that I’m not allowed to change my mind, grow, and develop as a person beyond my 20s/30s. Unless you don’t plan to live past your 20s, no one truly knows what they’re going to do for the rest of their life in their 20s, 30s, or even their 40s for that matter.
Instead of asking yourself what you’re going to do for the rest of your life, try scaling it back a bit. Think about what you want to do in the next five to ten years.
Think about something you enjoy doing that consumes most of your conversations. Are you constantly talking about social issues? Technology? World travel? Look into job opportunities that would allow you to focus on the area(s) of choice.
Take a moment to think back to your childhood. Was there something you really enjoyed doing? I loved being in charge and entertaining people. It’s no coincidence that I am working towards a career as a producer.
Tip: Start by making a list of all of the things you want to do (i.e. a bucket list) and all of the things you enjoyed doing as a child. See what you come up with and if there are any job ideas you’ve been overlooking.
Figuring it all out
The simple answer is: You won’t. I work with people that are 50+ who are still clearly trying to figure life (which I assume is the ‘it’) out.
Accepting that there was nothing to “figure out” and that I’d be learning until the day I die allowed me to pass on the free ticket for the quarter life crisis train.
You just have to get your shit together.
Getting my s**t together
I know it sounds scary, but it’s a lot simpler than many of us are making it. It seems safe to say a lot of us are trying to avoid getting stuck at a job we hate for 50 years. Staying at a job you hate, that’s your prerogative. Incase you haven’t seen the meme:
J.K Rowling was homeless, Tina Fey was working at the YMCA, Oprah had gotten fired from her first job as a TV Reporter, and Walt Disney had declared bankruptcy.
I am going to add to this list… and Shonda Rhimes (the woman who owns Thursday nights) was working in advertising. ADVERTISING.
If you don’t have a job, get one and start saving money. Make time in the morning, evening, or during downtime at work to focus on something that will help you move into your job/career of choice. We make time for what we want to make time for.
If you can, collaborate! Two heads are better than one. More importantly, two people can do twice the work of one.