I am fully aware that the post below may be somewhat controversial as not everyone feels this way…
Sometimes it hits right after graduation when your lack of a job forces you to move into your new apartment (a.k.a your parents house). For others it hits a couple years post graduation when the excitement of buying new work clothes wears and getting a new job fades. Leaving you with the common reality of being an unfulfilled entry level employee having to pay off college loans.
Yet the “quarter life crisis” isn’t quite as noticeable as the “mid-life crisis”. There are no covertible cars (only rentals), Harley Davidson bike’s, extramarital affairs, or Just For Men hair products laying around. Instead just pounds of college debt, a Northface jacket, UGG boots, a lack of a “good job”, and an education system who will still continue to teach as if students gracefully roll out of college and land at the feet of corporate America.
Which is probably why it still blows my mind when I see Hallmark graduation cards that say “Congratulations on your new job!” When I often think they should read something like:
“Congratulations you just signed a contract to be someone’s Biatch which includes paper work, a small cubicle, and a full year of work before earning any vacation time. Ready to celebrate?!”
Luckily it’s not all doom and gloom, those who actually get a “good job” are receiving a salary allowing them to live with the perks of a health plan, a possible gym membership, and even free coffee! However, it is becoming somewhat of a 20 something reality that finding a “good job” is similar to finding a needle in a haystack.
Plus these so-called “good jobs” aren’t really that “good” after all. (It seems excessive quotations are perfect for making a point.)Which is exactly why the quarter life crisis shouldn’t be looked down upon, but embraced.
Better to know this at age 25 when we’re poor than wasting our money on hair products when we’re 50! So go ahead and turn off the cruise control. You’ve got plenty of time to change your course!
Figure Out What You Love to Do
Whether it be playing volleyball, taking your dog for a walk, or reading book after book incorporate these activities into your daily life. If you’re unsure of what you love to do. Think back to when you were a kid or things that made time fly by. It might take a week, a month, or a year to fully figure out what it is that makes you tick. So don’t lose patience.
Start Planning for the Future
If there is absolutely no way on earth you can see yourself staying in your current profession don’t continue to whine and sulk over the endless pit of watercooler conversations or cubicles. Start planning. After figuring out what it is you love or are passionate about start researching on how you can make it into a profession. Whether it be starting your own business or working for a different company plan, network, and start engineering your way into the work/life you want.
Don’t Get Warped into a “Good Job”
This theory of “good jobs” should be put to rest. I’m not sure what qualifies or doesn’t qualify a “good job”, but it seems everyone wants you to have one. Many define it as a Fortune 500 company, a health care plan, or a number on your paycheck, but to be real that doesn’t define good. It defines stable.
Having a “good job” is when you wake up loving what you get to do each day. Stop chasing this theoretical “quotational” myth.
My parents, friends, and siblings can all attest to the fact that I hate reading. They will tell you this because I’ve made it vocally and loudly known. Today I’m officially announcing that I was partly wrong (notice partly)! I did hate reading. What I hated was being forced to read.
Classic books like Treasure Island, Grapes of Wrath, and Animal Farm did not interest me in the slightest bit. They pushed me into never wanting to pick up a book again. What’s amazing is when you find material that not only peaks your interest but speaks to you on a personal level. It can not only change your mindset but your life. I mean Edward just loved Bella so much. Come on, I’m joking! Sort of?
Being 2o something and complaining about your job seems to be a common right of passage. Next time avoid going to happy hour to rant about how much work sucks and network with others who actually enjoy their job. Doing this will motivate you to live a better life for yourself. So rather than sulk in misery engage in what could be your future.
Last but not least…“Remember the mid-life crisis is just the quarter life crisis prolonged!”