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One day you are perfectly okay. You are happy. You love life. But the next you find it hard to cope with living every day. You are sad. You are lonely. After graduating from college you can’t wait for your life to start. You have high hopes. You are positive. But after months of job hunting or months after landing your first job you feel unsatisfied. You feel discontent. You are lost. If you can relate, don’t worry as you are not alone. Many of us have gone through this phase in life which we call quarter-life crisis and many of us are still undergoing.
This is a phenomenon common to young adults in their mid-20 and many argue that this is a bogus phenomenon. I beg to disagree. Just because you don’t feel it doesn’t mean it is untrue. Others have experienced it (so have I) and that is enough for me to believe that it exists. People going through this phase also often do not show any signs. Most of the time, they keep things to themselves and appear normal on the outside. But as they say, those who appear the happiest are often the saddest inside. Just because everything appears to be normal on the outside doesn’t mean it is true on the inside. There could be lots of things going on inside one’s head and we can never know until that person speaks up.
- Find someone who will listen – it is very important to have a support person during this time in your life. You will need someone who will listen to all your concerns and your thoughts. You need someone who won’t judge you for thinking the way you do. I am lucky to have my boyfriend with me during that time of my life and I was able to talk things through with him. He encouraged me and made me feel positive. He didn’t judge me. He listened and supported me.
- Talk – let it all out. Don’t let your emotions pile up or it will be difficult for you to get through this phase.
- Find a hobby – sometimes it is helpful when you are distracted. You don’t get to think of those negative things and you don’t remember that you are sad. You can find solace in doing something that you love doing. Who knows, this could be the door that will lead you to where you are supposed to be. When you are lost trying to figure out your future, jumping from one job to another, find your passion. Start by finding a hobby and do it wholeheartedly.
- Travel – when you are feeling down and lost, traveling is very therapeutic. The change in environment, the feeling that no one knows you, the thought of starting anew all feels very refreshing. It makes you think of things in a different way and it opens up your eyes to the world. Go to places you have never been to or go back to places you’ve been wanting go back to. Don’t stay put; move around and see the world.
- Disconnect – one of the reasons why some people undergo quarter-life crisis is because they often compare their life to other people. Why is she successful and I am not? Where did I go wrong? What do I have to do to achieve things too? Why does my life suck? Why is her life so awesome? She is so much younger than me but is living the life. Why can’t I be the same? As they say, don’t believe everything you see online because you don’t know what goes behind the lens. Her life may seem perfect online but we don’t know if it is the same offline. The best thing you can do to stop comparing your life from other people is to disconnect. Deactivate your Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram or simply leave it as it is. Don’t login. Resist the urge. Make your life the way you want it to be and return with a vengeance.
Quarter-life crisis is a phase in life when you want to be someone but you can’t quite figure out how to get there yet. You want to leave an imprint in this world but you are lost. You want to do things but are afraid to take any action. Don’t worry as it is perfectly normal. You will be able to get through this phase in life and realize your potential. It is perfectly okay to feel like this because it is through your lowest point that you will start to get to your highest point.
But to undergo quarter-life crisis is actually quite daunting. You feel lost. You feel alone. You feel sad. You feel depressed. You feel all sorts of negative. You might even have suicidal thoughts. You feel like the universe is against you and the world as you imagined it to be is starting to fall apart. But don’t let yourself succumb to all these negative emotions. I was able to pull myself up and so can you. Here is how I did it:
Life is full of mysteries and I will never figure out why quarter-life crisis happens. But this is what makes life interesting, isn’t it? You can never know what will happen next but you have the power to shape it. You are in control of how you want your life to become. Remember, your life today is the sum of all your choices in the past. It is your choice to get through this phase in life and make the life you want to have.