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My Journal

The Quarter-Life Crisis is Real

The Quarter-Life Crisis is Real

Are you 25?

I’m 23 but 24 in my ID Card, something happened with the document when I was a kid, it’s tough to explain. So, this year I’ll be turning to 25 and have a quarter-life crisis.

When I was 15, I couldn’t wait till I turned 20–25 so I can move out, be in a relationship, start a family, and be financially secured with the career of my dreams. To this day, I still haven’t accomplished them yet. I wouldn’t call it a crisis, though. I’m just overwhelmed with emotions of feeling pressured into building a responsible life.

Lately, I’ve been feeling pressured and desperate. I allow my emotions to come out and not hold them back. I’m 24 and turning 25 this year. Not married, still single, and living with my family. I’m not able to invite a guy over who I like or night hang out with friends at my family’s place. It’s killing me not to have that freedom of independency and deal with aging parents. I have the urge and a strong desire to move out. I want to start a family of my own, I really need a partner to expostulate, to understand and support each other right now. That’ll be great. I can’t just be single till my 30s, you know? This crisis of mine isn’t that bad, at least. I wonder what it’s like once I hit 30 because that’s when the “clock is ticking” and I’ve read comments from people in their 30’s saying the crisis is worse when you’re 30 than 25.

You see everyone around you graduating from college, getting a dream job, getting married, buying a house, and starting a family. Looking at them makes you feel like you haven’t achieved anything in life yet. You may still live with your parents in your mid-20s, and you feel like you’re way behind everyone else when it comes to being independent. You feel like you have no value because you’re not fully independent yet.

You Will Feel Pressured

There’s a side of you that still wants to live your life to the fullest and take life easy because you’re still young. You’re not old, but you’re not a kid anymore. You should take the time to find out what you want. You still have a life ahead of you.

Then the other side of you feels pressured by the people around you. People expect you to take responsibility for your life now. People ask you why you aren’t married yet, why you don’t have a stable job yet, and why you don’t have children yet. To people, you should have married, children, and a stable job by now at the age of 25. But you don’t, and it makes you feel anxious.

You begin to ask yourself questions such as:

  1. Am I in the right career?
  2. When will I ever have kids of my own?
  3. How long does it take to find the right partner?
  4. Am I a loser for not acting my age?
  5. Why is everyone around me getting married and having kids?
  6. Why am I behind everyone else when it comes to responsibility?
  7. Why haven’t I got my own house yet?

In a study presented at the British Psychological Society meeting this week, researchers distilled the five key phases of the quarter-life crisis (via New Scientist) from a survey of 50 volunteers who’d had them. In the article by Discover Magazine, they quote the 5 phases of the Quarter-Life Crisis:

Phase 1 — A feeling of being trapped by your life choices. Feeling as though you are living your life on autopilot.

Phase 2 — A growing sense of “I’ve got to get out” and the feeling that you can change your life.

Phase 3 — Quitting the job or relationship or whatever else is making you feel trapped and embarking on a “time out” period where you try out new experiences to find out who you want to be.

Phase 4 — Rebuilding your life.

Phase 5 — Developing new commitments more attuned to your interests and aspirations.

I’ve had the feeling of phases 1, 2, and 3. I feel like I’m being trapped and stuck in my situation, I need to get out. Besides that, I know I can change my life for the better, but I just don’t know how to deal with it. It makes me feel pressured.

What You Feel is Perfectly Normal

You’re not alone. I felt relieved that many people go through the same thing, and I wasn’t struggling with it alone. Just embrace the crisis and pressure. Understand why you’re feeling this way. Honestly? It’s healthy to question yourself when you’re having a quarter-life crisis, but don’t let it overkill you. It means you can think for yourself, and you’re serious about living a successful life. It’s very ambitious.

Stop Compare Your Life with Others

People have married, children, dream jobs, and a house at 25. Just because people got their achievements in life doesn’t mean they’re happy with their life.

It’s honestly better to wait for the right time than get in a hurry for the sake of peer pressure and following up with the crowd. Being unready and hurrying up is the worst mistake you can make for yourself.

The most important thing is always to get closer to God. In Allah, I put my trust and everything will be alright.


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