Quarter life crisis. Everyone goes through it or knows someone going through it. You log on to Facebook and see people getting engaged or married, people constantly travelling and putting up pictures from where yonder. And you really wonder what you’re doing, sitting in front of your laptop, living vicariously and dreaming endlessly of what could be.
All of a sudden, everyone seems to want to start their own business, wanting to break free from the bond of working for someone else. Suddenly friends are too busy for frivolous conversations, things that were exciting topics for tête-à-tête before have become passé; everyone’s so much more focused on setting a mark in the world, making a difference, that the small pleasures of life seem to be a thing of the distant past. We look around and see people in their 40s and 50s still working under an insufferable boss, and freak out at the thought of that happening to us.
In this whole rat-race of making money, we forget to live.We constantly gripe about things we don’t have or things that someone else has. We persistently try to adapt to new situations and circumstances and wonder how people are so different from the people we knew back home. But of course no one’s there to listen to our groans and laments, as everyone’s experiencing it themselves in their own way; so we just push everything to the back of our minds, and continue building that extravagant dream of where we should be in the future one second, and engulfed by indecision the other.
Well, misery loves company and it is indeed comforting to know that we’re not alone in this maddeningly confusing phase of life. I used to wonder if any of it is worth it. Are people really happy being miles away from their loved ones, trying to earn money and make it big? Was it just me who really missed everything that was and was terribly nostalgic about my school and college days? Then I realized, that this is probably the best phase of life. Things will fall in place in a few years and these can be the best years to discover yourself, explore your independence, and become stronger.
Take risks if they’re not life threatening. Do whatever makes you happy. Don’t do things that make others happy and convince yourself that you like it too. This is possibly the best phase to find out who you are, without any influence or stimulus from peers, parents or people who used to tell you to be a certain way. Don’t be afraid to be yourself; the people who judge are not an integral part of your life anyway. Talk to people randomly, on buses, metros, coffee shops. What better place to start doing this, than a new country, state or city. Learn to enjoy your company. That’s something no one can ever take away from you. Most of all, stop seeking validation from people. For anything. If you manage to battle the pangs of loneliness, feelings of incompetence, and mad sessions of confusion, and channel it in the right direction, you’ll be amazed at how empowered you feel.
“Love the life you live.
Live the life you love.” -Bob Marley