Midlife crisis, Millennial Life, or Depressed

Reply Sun 2 Dec, 2018 11:55 pm
Could you please point me in the correct direction of what I should look up to get myself through where I am in life?

I’m 35, millennial, college grad, in debt up to my eyeballs. I am no where in life that would have expected by now. I am upset with myself about my student loan debt, but I am VERY VERY upset that I am not married and more upset that I do not have children. I am going to be 36 in 60 days, the clock is ticking and I just don’t feel like the number 1 thing I have wanted in my life just is not going to happen purely and solely because of my student loan debt.

I went to school for marketing, also something I have wanted to do since I was a kid. I loved it originally. Then I started overthinking it. Marketing is just using psychology to get people to purchase things, many are definitely not necessary in life. Just garbage, things that get thrown in a closet to be seen in 5 years. I have been looking for another job, but I don’t know what even interests me. I work hours upon hours a day multiple jobs to pay off my student loans and its just not happening fast enough and I am just making myself miserable. Recently a couple contract projects have decided not to pay, making me absolutely broke.

I am the person that will do whatever anyone wants. I used to be the happiest person. Maybe it was the moment the thought first popped in my head that the only reason people like me is because I do stuff for them. And I started to think that I was getting used. Now whenever someone asks for something I just feel like I get an inner attitude because I have come to the conclusion if I ask for someone to help me all I am going to get is an attitude and be told no, then if I tell them I can not help them they are just going to be rude to me. I have started walking away from these people, but really that only seems to leave my boyfriend and parents in my life.

Other than my boyfriend, mother, father, and my cats, I have no love for anything anymore. Nothing makes sense to my. Sports used to be a big part of my life and I coached. Now I feel like it’s a waste of time not only for me but for the kids playing the sports, even watching professional sports, I just don’t get the point of adults getting paid millions of dollars to run around a field. I used to listen to music, it just seems so fake now, its all about being famous not about making music with instruments, as long as you were on youtube or disney you are good to go. I go to buy clothes and everything I like is 98 dollars each, who in their right mind would spend a 98 dollars on leggings/yoga pants? For what? So the company can have a 90 profit on each pair? For what? Watching tv just seems like such nonsense also, I have yet to find anything that is worth me watching that will not be ended within a year so it was just a waste of time. The internet used to be my happy place, it seems to make me mad more than happy anymore.

That is just some thoughts that are going through my head. “Just a waste of time” is a pretty good quote of how I feel anymore. Am I going through a mid-life crisis. Or is this just the life of a millennial?
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Reply Mon 3 Dec, 2018 06:04 am
Which is more important to you? Is it marriage, having kids or paying off debt?

Make a list of things that are important to you and work towards those goals. Start devising a one, five and ten year plan. You are in charge of your own happiness, so take charge of it.

You say you have a boyfriend but "am VERY VERY upset that I am not married." Two options here: either ask HIM to marry you (and mean it) or get out of the relationship. It really is that simple.

You want children? Then foster or adopt a child on your own. You don't have to be married for that, just a good heart that has the capacity to love a kid.

Debt? Standard answers apply. Reduce expenses and increase income. No more contract work, a 2nd job with a steady paycheck will do.

If you own a house, consider selling it. Or add roommates to help cut the bills. Cut up credit cards. Cook more often than going out. Stop buying clothes you don't need or wear. Get rid of high cost tv/internet and go with a minimal plan.

Find a new hobby. Exercise more. Read more. Grow some plants. Volunteer at a hospital, nursing, animal shelter, get politically active, make crafts, the sky is your limit.

Time is a gift. What are you going to do with yours?
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Reply Mon 3 Dec, 2018 07:18 am
You sound depressed (I am not a doctor).

Certainly there's nothing to lose by talking to yours. I am assuming you are in the Northern Hemisphere and it is getting dark and cold. You may have seasonal affective disorder to some degree. A full spectrum light, or just getting outside whenever you can, will help.

Exercise, as PUNKEY pointed out, is a very good idea. And she's right about you taking more charge of your life.

Recognize that a lot of people are in a similar boat. The economy is not truly helping out the younger set; it's just keeping you from utterly failing but it's not really lifting you. And debt sucks. Do yourself a favor and start spending yours down as well as you can. You'll be a far happier person later in life.

And you're basically where I was when I was about 28. In 1990. Recognize that reassessing your life every few years is pretty damned normal and it's not necessarily a crisis. Rethinking your path is a good thing.

I think you've bought into marketing hype a lot, which is interesting because you also know the back end of it (I, too, am in marketing). $98 for a pair of leggings is marketing nonsense. It's also a means of keeping you in debt. Buy good leggings that last and wear them more often than a closet full of 'em. If they cost $98, then so be it - if they last. If they don't, then buy 'em at Walmart.

And marketing hype is also behind the concept that you must be married by X age or have kids by Y age or even kids at all. These things also need not go together. The suggestion of adoption is a great one.

And get your eggs frozen if you see really, really oh my God my life will not be complete unless I stamp my DNA on a kid as a part of your thinking. That should take the pressure off any decisions that your mind is screaming have to be made right now.

In 1693, Benjamin Congreve wrote a variant of: Marry in haste, repent at leisure. 325 years later, that's still true. Think long and hard about marriage. It's not a necessity for everyone -- and a lousy marriage is a lot worse than anything you're feeling now.

If you feel your life and work are without purpose, it can be harder to get up and go to such a job. Then give your life purpose. You are a grown woman. Take your marketing education and put it to good use -- like in volunteering to help your local animal shelter get more adoptions by improving how they present their critters. Or just do some good physical activity, like volunteering at a soup kitchen or building houses.

Explore older music -- there's a ton of it on YouTube or even -- gasp! -- take it out of your local library (another place where you could make a difference). In particular, get into folk, where there's a lot of artifice stripped away. Get into music made by people who you know are known for their musicianship, everyone from Stevie Wonder to Bonnie Raitt to Elton John or Prince or Bowie or Hayley Westenra. Or explore people who are known to have great voices without auto-tune, like Ann Wilson from Heart or the guys from CSN.

Get out and explore your town or city. Find the cheap and free places, particularly places where you can experience art. Maybe the local museum has free Sunday afternoons. You'll never know unless you check.

And hang in there. Like I said, get medical help if you need it. And a reassessment is normal and it is a good thing.

This, too, shall pass.
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Reply Mon 3 Dec, 2018 04:11 pm
It sounds like you are just developing a more critical perspective on things and feeling the disappointment that comes with realizing life doesn't come on a silver platter the way it is marketed (ironic that you in marketing).

You are experiencing sort of a mid-life crisis where you are seeing things in new ways and re-evaluating assumptions you may have held uncritically or even subconsciously in the past. Just try to not freak out and observe these thoughts as they come by without reacting to them. Gradually, you will begin coming up with new creative ideas for how to pursue your dreams and goals in ways that don't seem like such a waste of time.

You will be amazed at how many opportunities open up regarding everything from family to work to consumption as you start to re-evaluate your values and the world-as-you-know-it.

Ultimately there's no reason to despair because people have been going through this kind of thing forever and getting through it. It can actually be the test of character that really prepares you to be mature and responsible enough to start a family, instead of just doing it because of some youthfully naive image of what you assumed based on some information you understood at some level but not at another.

Really, everything keeps getting clearer if you can be patient and open to it, though.
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Reply Mon 3 Dec, 2018 05:03 pm
You are not alone: thousands of grads were told that there would be jobs for them after graduation, only to be left holding a student debt - and no or low paying job.

Seems overwhelming, dead end , and useless - exactly as you described.

Can I refer you to videos of Saduguru? He speaks about hitting a wall and wondering what it’s all about, and how to re- focus yourself.

You are also probably much more competent than you think, it’s just that you need to reset your own thinking.

Good luck. (I’d give my left eye to be 36 again)
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Reply Fri 18 Jan, 2019 05:00 pm
I actually agree with a lot of what you said, relating to the shallowness of so much in this world. The thing is, happiness is not about what others do, it's about what makes you happy....that may sound obvious, but a lot of people unknowingly, actively work against this:

- Don't confuse happiness with highs or pleasure (so many people do). Both of the latter two things can enhance happiness, but cannot make you happy. There are any number of people that go from high to high, pleasure to pleasure, that range from generally unhappy with life, to intensely unhappy.

- Work out what makes you happy (it differs for everyone), and again, don't confuse highs & pleasure with happiness. Most things that make us happy revolve around work, achievement, relationships, passions, purpose etc

- work on your self esteem. It's necessary to happiness. Or from another perspective - without self esteem, happiness is prone to many more ups & downs, and life makes less sense. My personal view is self esteem is what you value within yourself (and the amount you value it), while ego is the value you place on yourself because of what others think of you. Ie. one comes from within, the other from without. Lastly, the easiest way to start understanding your own self worth, is to list the qualities in people you admire, and then look inside yourself to see which you possess. No one can ever take that away from you. And from here, you also have a starting point to bettering yourself.

- learn to stand up for yourself, respectfully. This is also necessary to self esteem. On the negative end, if someone uses or abuses you, your subconscious will accept it once. Twice it might go 'what's going on'. On the third occassion, it starts asking itself if you deserve it, because you are putting up with it (it's how people in domestic violence relationships end up putting up with much more than they ever would have it the abuse occurred at the start of the relationship). So though the abuse comes from without, it is what happens within your subconscious that affects your self esteem. Learn to stand up for yourself.

- the three paragraphs above take work, and focus. Focusing on what makes you happy isn't about selfishness, it's about recognising what makes you happy and ensuring that is in your life. They are things you can work on for life.

- ambition and goals are fine. Ambition without accompanying contentment will always leave you unsatisfied.

Also, try reading some books, or see a counsellor. Forums tend to be bandaids.

Best wishes.
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