The Quarterlife Crisis is So Real Out Here
A year ago, I wrote a piece for Clutch Magazine called The Quarterlife Crisis is Real because it is outchea. And I wanted to revisit it. A year later, I’m still like “SOMEONE GIVE ME A MAP!” Anywho, it’s reposted here with their permission and with edits of foolishment.
We’ve heard so much about the Midlife Crisis, but not enough about the Quarterlife. It refers to a phase of uncertainty and inner chaos for young people who are transitioning to adulthood. Between the ages of 25 and 35, the Quarterlife Crisis can hit you, filling you with confusion and turmoil about life in general. You’re outchea walking around like someone who used Apple Maps. SHADE.
But listen… the Quarterlife Crisis is real out here, and if someone says it isn’t, they’re a liar and a cheat (-_-).
We’re supposed to be “adults” now, and have life figured out to a certain extent. But we find ourselves waking up and wondering what we’re supposed to be doing with our lives and if we’re even doing it. Are we where we should be? Some of us might even feel conflicted when we realize that we might have found our purpose, but then wonder if we’re working hard enough at it. It’s a time of lots of questions and not enough answers. Some of us just spend our time busting out *wall slides* at random intervals.
Life’s manual kinda stops at “Graduate from college.” We flip the page and it’s blank, waiting for us to fill in the rest. We have so many skills and passions but we don’t know where to direct our next efforts. This is ultimately the biggest problem for us Quarterlifers. Sometimes, having TOO many choices can be just as binding as having too few. There are so many things we could be doing, so how can we pick one? Our awesomeness is totally at fault here. (-_-)
“Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, and sorry I could not travel both.” (ROBERT FROST SPEAKS MY TRUTH!!! *kicks down a chair*)
That fork in the road is not gonna take itself.
We’re in our 20s or early 30s. We’re global citizens who are skilled at many things, and passionate about even more. Our choices are endless, and we’re confused. We’re like birds with no internal GPS.
As Generation Millennia, we’re even MORE disposed to this crisis because nothing is set in stone for us anymore. Baby Boomers had a path to take: go to school, graduate, get married, have kids, get a job, stay in that job, retire. That’s what they often did. But, we’re different.
A lot of us aren’t married, or have kids. Nothing ties us to being really grounded. Plus, Generation Millennia is also Generation Fickle. We’re usually not one to stay at one job for 20-30 years. We change careers more fluidly. Our resumes are 3 pages long at age 27 (true story) and it’s because we’ve held 5 jobs in 5 years. Or we’re just so dope that 1 page resumés do us no justice.
Having “good” jobs doesn’t cut it anymore. We want to live purpose-driven lives, and pursue our dreams. But this often comes at the expense of the “grown up” life we’re supposed to be living. You know, the one with the 2.5 kids, white picket fence, nice savings account and 401(k)? Yes that one. That awkward moment when you check your bank balance and want to cry in your tea because you’re poor. Yeah that happens at least twice a month. Chasing your dreams can get expensive.
And sometimes, you want to abandon those dreams for the 9-5 that will guarantee you a paycheck every 2 weeks. You even look for jobs and see how much you’d be making RIGHT NOW if you had a regular job and you wonder if you aren’t making a mistake by trying to do this on your own. But then you say “I’MA DO IT ANYWAY! YOLO!”
We have SO many choices. And with that comes an even realer fear of failure, because if we fail, it is solely because of those choices. The world is our oyster, but we don’t know which pearl to pick. “If I woulda gone with the blue door instead of the red door, I might have…” That is what adds the pressure. What is we gon do?!?
I realize these are all First World Problems. We’re just too phenomenal for our own good. Yet and still, we have decisions to make that impact our next 20 years and the rest of our lives. And it makes us nervous. Well, it makes ME nervous. The Quarterlife Crisis is just really confusing. If only life had it’s own Google Map.
I want to write a poem called “Ain’t I A Quarterlifer?” And the last line would be “Phenomenal confusion, phenomenally!”
Robert Frost wrote:
“I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.”
Word, Robert. Word. He must have written this when he was a Quarterlifer.
Where’s Iyanla to fix my Quarterlife??? Who else feels like this?