It’s a term that’s being banded around a lot lately – ‘Quarter life Crisis’. A variation on the well-known ‘Mid-Life Crisis’ suffered predominantly by males (which I’m told involves running off with women half your age and buying a sports car), it seems to now be a phenomenon afflicting the 20-30 year olds of the first world.
But what exactly constitutes a ‘Quarter Life Crisis’? Surely people of this age shouldn’t be experiencing any sort of anguish – they should be too busy having fun, right?
But that is just one of the pressures and expectations laid on youngsters by society which makes this time a difficult one. Conventions and socially acceptable practices are changing rapidly, but are also shackled by old-style mentalities. For example, women are expected to go to university and follow a decent, respectable career, to be independent. Yet if a woman is living alone and not married by 30, she is whispered about and constantly reminded of her ‘biological clock’, however successful her career is. We are all obsessed with material things and competing in futile desperation to be ‘the best’ at life – but only by society’s standards. In the back of our minds, our own values and dreams remind us occasionally of what we really want, but cannot bring ourselves to break from convention to obtain.
Not only should we be having fun in our twenties, we should also be building a solid career and saving for a house and for the point at which our lives suddenly become full of unavoidable responsibility. Fresh out of university or battling your way through the dark, unforgiving forest of employment, it’s enough just to pay rent, council tax and heating bills, let alone save for a deposit and mortgage on a meagre wage AND have money to spend on copious amounts of alcohol and expensive holidays .
As I touch on in a previous post, you can’t do it all. And I think that’s what a Quarter Life Crisis is all about – feeling as if you should do it all, and simply feeling like a big fat failure when you’re understandably unable to do so. That added to the confusion of not knowing what you want to do or how you want to live your life – and the pressure to have it all figured out as your twenties start to fly before your eyes.
This blog covers a lot of my tips for surviving this strange era in which we live, such as living more simply and rationing social media. Watch this space – but in the meantime take a look at the following posts which I hope will make you feel a little better! Realise we are all in it together, and nobody really knows what they’re doing, even if they look like they do.
- Procrastination – the thief of time (and sanity)
- You can’t do it all
- Good things are just around the corner!
Suggestions for alternative posts? Send them in!