Surviving A Quarter-Life Crisis
The inward collapse of identity, the messy tragedy that characterises a life crisis was once considered an experience confined to the early-forties age group. Not anymore - the quarter life crisis is real.
The often-cited mid-life crisis, which has provided years of oft-hilarious comedy fodder, is now more common in the 20-30's age group. The trope of the forty-something man buying an unnecessarily expensive sports car (probably in ‘racing red,’) is as outdated as it is overused. Research from LinkedIn reveals that Millennials have their mid-life crisis early, dubbing it the ‘quarter-life crisis.' And according to The Guardian, the quarter-life crisis affects a huge 86% of Millennials, who report being bogged down by insecurities, disappointments, loneliness and depression.
So whether you’re 22 or 62, if you’re feeling consumed by questioning the direction of your career, relationships and overall life purpose, we have some helpful tips for getting back to inner-peace.
It’s become one of those eye-roll inciting, grimace-causing words, but take our word, it is almost impossible to have a life crisis when the house is neat and tidy, you're clocking a solid eight hours sleep, and you're full of fresh air and chicken casserole.
It’s the small things that make you feel invincible, not the huge life makeovers. It all starts with getting out of bed in the morning and straightening those sheets and arranging the pillows. You don't have to rise every morning at 5 am for a green juice and a half marathon, but you will probably be surprised to find a comforting pleasure in the granular routine of your day.
2. Reduce Social Media Usage
If you’re feeling low, anxious, lethargic or empty of creative ideas, log off your social media feeds. An endless stream of impossibly thin, bikini-clad girls you don’t know is not going to incite any creative ideas of big thoughts, in fact, it will do quite the opposite. But reading a Tennessee Williams’ play, watching a TED talk, or listening to Elizabeth Gilbert’s Magic Lessons podcast on creativity and confidence might. If you want to promote big thinking, you have to take in big thinking.
3. Help Others
A personal crisis, more often than not, involves a break-down of self-confidence or identity. All happening inside your head. Take comfort in the thought that you’re not the only one struggling on with broken dreams. There's a whole world of people out there struggling too; you're merely a tiny part of an enormous picture. One of the most helpful things you can do is distract yourself from negative self-talk by helping someone else. This doesn’t have to be a huge act of kindness, but there’s a lot to be said for sending flowers to a friend having a bad week, signing petitions and donating to charity, or helping an old lady with her shopping on the way home from work.
4. Stop Comparing Yourself
Absolutely no good will come from comparing your life to anyone else's. Whether that’s your newly-married friend planning a couple of babies, or a stage actress making it big on Broadway, whose interview you just read on the train to work. Figure out what you want and keep focused on that, don't get distracted by other people's successes or failures, your journey is unique to you – enjoy all its twists and turns, they are yours and yours only.
5. Go With The Flow
Most importantly, try to embrace all of life’s mishaps. Failure doesn’t have to be a bad thing, many times it leads you to bigger and better opportunities. Success stories so often have one common thread: embracing failure. Let life take you to the door best suited for your purpose, have a little faith and lean into the unknown.