Did the quarter-life crisis exist before our generation? If it did, it was probably not as prominent as it is now. Anyone else get those condescending head shakes and scoffs when you mention it?
It really does exist! I believe it stems from the fact that Millennials, unlike our parents and generations before them, we grew up comfortably. When we were kids, the economy was prospering so buying goods was cheaper.
Our parents could get a job with a college degree, not to mention, paying for that degree was a small fraction of what it is now. Having a stable income and a comfortable lifestyle was the key to happiness.
Growing up comfortably, what Baby-Boomers will call “entitled” (haters), has given us a need for more. By more, I don’t mean more money and super cool stuff but fulfillment and enlightenment.
This craving has caused a crisis for Millennials, that never existed in generations before.
Not only are jobs for Millennials few and far between but the jobs we actually want are fewer and further between. That is, if you even know what you actually want to do.
If you are lost you have no idea what you want to do with the rest of your life. This crisis is probably the most common and for some, the hardest to experience.
You are probably working a job that you are unsure about, contemplating whether or not it could become a career. Thoughts about what you really want to do often plague you. You know you want to help people or to work in a field that involves sports or to do something with art but you are still not sure exactly what that is.
You just don’t know.
You’re in Limbo
You have figured it out, you are pretty freaking sure what you want to do for the rest of your life. You feel the triumph that comes with not being lost anymore, like the rest of your Millennial friends. However, you have done very little or nothing at all in order to work towards it.
You are still scared that it will not work out and you will fail. You’re still weighing the pros and cons of pursuing this dream. Maybe you even consult the people around you in order to look for support and garner justification.
If in limbo, you’re in the middle of making a change and keeping everything the same.
You are making moves to where you want to go: filling out applications, taking classes, and making yourself better. You keep pushing your life to where you want to go in life but nothing seems to be working.
Rejections are all you see in your inbox. People constantly doubt you and make you feel like you are not good enough.
You feel like you are stuck where you are, no matter how hard you keep trying. You feel defeated and contemplate quitting, wondering how long it will take until you finally catch your break.
You eat, sleep, and breathe traveling. You make lists of all of the places you want to go and plan out the itineraries at warp speed. The world is a piece of art and you want to see it. Once your backpack is stuffed, you are off. You have no ties or obligations to the “real-world”.
If you do not fit the above description to some degree, you probably wish you did. You have created Pinterest boards or looked longingly at pictures of all of the places you want to visit. You want to take the steps to see all of these places but you just can not get yourself to pick up and leave.
You are probably more recently graduated Millennial and you do not like how life is right now. You hate the job you always thought you wanted, or never wanted at all. Everything seems really hard and nothing is going your way.
You want to quit and give up. Life was not supposed to be this like this. You were supposed to be successful by now, you were supposed to be making 6-figures, you were supposed to engaged or married, you were supposed to have it all.
The world is screwing you over and you don’t like it.
Are you in one of these (slightly over exaggerated by the author) Millennial quarter-life crises? If you are like me, you suffer from a combination of these. I have probably gone threw all of these in one day.
But do not worry, you are not alone. There are thousands of Millennials experience the same crises that you are facing. No matter what you’ve been told, you do not have to have everything together.
The good thing about it being a quarter-life crisis is that it means you are only a quarter of the way threw your life. Even people in mid-life will tell you, you never really have it all figured out.
© 2016, Asian on the Outside, All Rights Reserved