5
   

Quarter-life crisis.

 
 
Reply Fri 12 Mar, 2010 03:58 pm
Hello A2K,
I have a little issue for you that I'm sure most of you will find very naive and maybe slightly entertaining, but I'm going to have to post it anyway I'm afraid-

I'm having a quarter life crisis. I'm 22 now. If you'd asked me 5 years ago what I wanted when I envisaged myself being say 70, I'd say (and I'd still say) that ideally I'd like to be living in a large beautiful flat high up in the middle of a city (maybe London, maybe Berlin)- a large balcony, one entire wall covered in books (at least 4 of them my own) artifacts from my travels adorning the walls. I'd be a scholar of some sort, culture related subject, semi retired but not actually retired, wordly, respected in my field etc. Maybe I'd have a partner (but not a husband) I'd probably have a couple of grandchildren round (from my adopted children) and I'd tell them all these interesting stories of what I'd done and where i'd been- you get the picture.
So I still want all of this, I mean- I can't think of anything else that would structure my life in such a fashion, give such a rich depth to it, I can't think of any any profession I'd rather take up, but recently I've become really scared of my ambition to 'do lots of stuff' because I really feel that by the time I reach 40 I'll have done too much and have nothing left. I know that's going to sound laugh-out-loud funny to some of you- I can't think of anyone on here over 40 who doesn't have a rich and interesting life- but I've heard the colour drains out of the world at 40, and I can really see it happening-
The basis to my thought is the fact that the last year I've lived in London, my last year of university, I've been so bored. It's not like me to be bored or apathetic about anything, but in the first two years I was here I saw so much and did so much in London that nothing is new anymore and so I have no incentive or 'drive'. Is this a microcosm of what life is like in general? I just have a feeling that when I graduate in a couple of months- I've got some money, I plan to move away from England- I'll get the same 'cocaine buzz' of being in a new place and doing something different, but then it will wear off and I'll move around a few countries, staying in each until the 'buzz' wears off, but then the 'buzz' will wear off traveling in general, so I'll come back and do a masters degree and start my career, which will at first be enthralling, but then the 'buzz' will wear off, and then I'll be 40 and have some kind of actual crisis and either turn buddhist or become a drug addict.
I spoke to my Dad about this, and he said life isn't like that, but he stayed in the town where he was born all his life with his wife and with me and a business, and also said he'd rather own a dog than go on holiday. I don't want to sound like a jerk, but I've got big plans and all the grit to achieve (although I am currently writing this instead of an essay) but I'm currently wondering if the assumption I had that this way I could somehow 'transcend' the fact that life is actually a bit **** and boring was wrong. And if it is wrong, then, well, damn.
pq x
 
mm25075
 
  2  
Reply Fri 12 Mar, 2010 04:12 pm
@The Pentacle Queen,
The Pentacle Queen wrote:

I can't think of anyone on here over 40 who doesn't have a rich and interesting life


Hahahahahahahahaha. You know one now. Smile Yes I'm over 40 (barely), work for an insurance co, own my home, just recently divorced with 5 cats. Boring life. Feel like I'm gonna be a crazy cat lady for the next 40 years.

I definately know what you mean. I have felt this shortly after having accomplished each of my goals...getting my Associate degree, then getting my Bachelors, then got a brand new car, then bought a house. Those are all the goals I had for my life..."now what???" I said to myself.... I'm two classes into my master's degree now but stopped because I just didn't have the motivation to continue. I will go back someday but right now I'm just floundering and trying to find something to laugh about every day and trying to enjoy this 'quiet' time until I can save up enough money to retire.
0 Replies
 
aidan
 
  2  
Reply Fri 12 Mar, 2010 04:17 pm
@The Pentacle Queen,
I'm more than twice as old as you and I've done a lot of things in my life and pretty much enjoyed them all - kids, job, travel, fun....but I'll tell you what I've learned that is most important: Make sure the people you love know that you love them. Because if they do, you will never have any regrets.

Stuff means nothing - people are everything.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  2  
Reply Fri 12 Mar, 2010 05:10 pm
@The Pentacle Queen,
"I can't think of any any profession I'd rather take up, but recently I've become really scared of my ambition to 'do lots of stuff' because I really feel that by the time I reach 40 I'll have done too much and have nothing left."

This sentiment happens off and on. But - you seem to have a lot of curiosity, and curiosity can spark you anew about things/ideas you are unaware of now; exploration could kill interest or open up door after door.

This is not a neg critical observation, but I'm noticing that you have a strong self image as an intellectual. I am not suggesting that you shouldn't have that, and continue that - but that relaxing about it and just experiencing walking through spaces in sun and rain and communicating with people, for good or ill, can open up the world, which is really endlessly rich.
Butrflynet
 
  2  
Reply Fri 12 Mar, 2010 05:19 pm
You assume the world won't change much after you hit 40 and that you'll grow bored with it because you will have done and learned everything there is to do and learn.

You have a big surprise waiting for you in your later years.

Life is as interesting as you want it to be. Sounds like you could use some hobbies. The process of finding one that interests you can be as enjoyable as the one you find.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  2  
Reply Fri 12 Mar, 2010 05:26 pm
@ossobuco,
An addendum. I'm in my sixties. I worked in medical research, art, and landscape architecture, starting the last just before I turned forty. That involved four more years of school and two of 'internship' before national boards. I don't regret any minute of any of those - I learned to see differently in all of them. What I do regret is that I never became a film editor, a film writer, a pro photographer, a chef. That I never became a good dancer or involved with hiking, say, the sierras, when I had the chance.

I was offered a research job at Scripps Institute of Oceanography when I got out of my lab training. That particular job sounded boring as all get out. Had I taken that, I might have gotten very interested in oceanography...

Life is not all mental observation. Get out there and do, and I don't mean that patronizingly. In the meantime, I sympathize with the walls full of books ambition.
0 Replies
 
Cycloptichorn
 
  2  
Reply Fri 12 Mar, 2010 05:31 pm
Everyone looks shiny from the outside. And my guess is that we all have been as bored as you from time to time.

Cycloptichorn
0 Replies
 
Swimpy
 
  4  
Reply Fri 12 Mar, 2010 07:32 pm
@The Pentacle Queen,
Honey, you are 22, a wonderful age. You are filled with energy and curiosity. You want the world to be exciting all the time. If it's not, then you get bored. The thing is that the world is not here to be your entertainment. It's your responsibility to bring the excitement to your own life. It's hard work sometimes. You also need great friends, deep love, work satisfaction and enough money so you don't have to spend all your time worrying about paying the bills.

The color does not drain from life at 40. Where did you hear such rubbish! Life is what you make it, dear. It may be a hackneyed line, but it is no less true.
0 Replies
 
The Pentacle Queen
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Mar, 2010 07:36 pm
@ossobuco,
ossobuco wrote:

"I can't think of any any profession I'd rather take up, but recently I've become really scared of my ambition to 'do lots of stuff' because I really feel that by the time I reach 40 I'll have done too much and have nothing left."

This sentiment happens off and on. But - you seem to have a lot of curiosity, and curiosity can spark you anew about things/ideas you are unaware of now; exploration could kill interest or open up door after door.

This is not a neg critical observation, but I'm noticing that you have a strong self image as an intellectual. I am not suggesting that you shouldn't have that, and continue that - but that relaxing about it and just experiencing walking through spaces in sun and rain and communicating with people, for good or ill, can open up the world, which is really endlessly rich.


Haha, that made me cringe a bit... Obviously I do want that as my profession, but it isn't like I've got blinkers on.

I think relaxing might help though. With me, the focus always tends to be to do things, i put (or at least did these last two years) a lot of pressure on myself to constantly do new things and have new experiences- some were really good, but some were just for the sake of it and not too rewarding.
I'm sure the world IS endlessly rich... but I just have a feeling I'm always going to be pursuing some form of 'newness' to provide interest...
0 Replies
 
failures art
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jun, 2010 01:18 am
You're a tad early on the QLC.

Wait until a few years after college, then freak out. You'll at least have a better totem of what identity issues you wish to be consumed by first! Very Happy

I kid I kid.

Seriously though. I'd stop thinking about what is coming 20 years down the pipe. We are fed lots of imagery on what we are supposed to want, and I can't help but feel like your previous descriptions of your 40s life is simply dispelled. It's familiar too. I've felt much the same in recent years, and I think I'm much more at peace with things.

I think you'll be fine. Not in the general no attempt to give advice way of saying you'll be fine either. Go grab a cheap bottle of wine and head to the park. Go enjoy your beauty and youth.

A
R
T
The Pentacle Queen
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jun, 2010 03:12 am
@failures art,
failures art wrote:

You're a tad early on the QLC.

Wait until a few years after college, then freak out. You'll at least have a better totem of what identity issues you wish to be consumed by first! Very Happy

I kid I kid.

Seriously though. I'd stop thinking about what is coming 20 years down the pipe. We are fed lots of imagery on what we are supposed to want, and I can't help but feel like your previous descriptions of your 40s life is simply dispelled. It's familiar too. I've felt much the same in recent years, and I think I'm much more at peace with things.

I think you'll be fine. Not in the general no attempt to give advice way of saying you'll be fine either. Go grab a cheap bottle of wine and head to the park. Go enjoy your beauty and youth.

A
R
T


Thank you, I shall do.
0 Replies
 
 

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