There is an illusion of people in their 20s believing that they are going through midlife crisis. The 20s is a bit too early to have a midlife crisis, people in this age group face quarter life crisis instead, but that does not undermine the challenges they face; age is not a criterion for the challenges life throws at people.
A 21year old once said, “if adulthood was a public bus, she’d like to alight at teenager’s street.”
How challenging could life be for a 21year old? It is a grave phenomenon because not everyone gets to battle their way out of this crisis.
What does quarter life crisis look like as a Nigerian?
One of the most challenging years you could ever face while growing up is your 20s. So much stuff happens during this period. Growth, learning, hard work, struggle, loneliness, depression, short-lived joy, nonchalance, breakdown, etc.
These words aren’t all synonymous; they create contrast images. These contrasts are what represent the 20s, and these attributes are what define a quarter life crisis as a Nigerian.
The transition from adolescence to adulthood hits psychologically. And physiologically and could knock one into a dark phase.
Causes of quarter life crisis as a Nigerian?
This is one general cause of so many adverse situations. In this age range, while some have their lives figured out, living successfully.
Several other people are still trying to wrap their way around their purpose. The feeling of seeing your mate more successful than you are could be intimidating to some people and force them out of their way to do things they might later regret.
This comes naturally when the person in question is uncertain about their ambitions. As a transition period, most people are trying to figure their paths and are uncertain about life choices.
They unsure of which could be fruitful. One minute they are committed to a plan the next they are trying something new, leaving initial plans at halfway. Silently, loss of confidence and the feeling of unfulfillment creeps in.
The realisation of responsibilities can hit people differently based on their orientation, e.g., people who have been dependent on others all their life may find it burdensome to cope with responsibilities.
It’s like trying to get things figured out while being nonchalant.
As overwhelming as it may be, it can quickly phase people into a state of loss of identity, thereby leading to depression.
This trait is common among youths who grow up in a very little or humble background. Their drive to succeed is so strong that they could work twice as hard as their peers.
They feel they are better than others because they have to do more to level them. Like Dave, the 22-year-old British-Nigerian music sensation said, “growing up with less you will have to do more, it is what it is”.
The hunger to be successful could be misleading when one becomes so obsessed that success must be gotten by any means. At the ‘by any means’ stage, they are ready to make life-changing and regrettable decisions.
Funny as it may sound – associating ageing to a 20-year-old. It is real, especially to youths who are goal-oriented. Some believe that every age should come with a milestone of achievement.
Hence, the inability to attain goals as age goes on may attract midlife crises.
How to deal with quarter life crisis as a Nigerian
Get yourself organized
Take time to put things into perspectives, even the tiniest details matter. One simple way to start is by keeping a to-do list, a diary or journal. A to-do list is a list of tasks or activities to be done.
It helps by bringing a level of orderliness to your life. Additionally, there’s some feeling of fulfilment that comes when you complete tasks and tick them on your list.
Journaling is the art of writing down experiences, thoughts or feelings, goals and ideas. Practicing this as a habit is a secondary step to success as it increases your potential of achieving your goals and objectives.
Become your own muse. If you are working hard, it is necessary to acknowledge the fact that you are trying by appreciating yourself.
Take time out to make yourself happy. Go on a vacation if you can afford one. Eat out, prepare your favourite meal, anything to lift your spirit. Likewise, learn to appreciate achievements no matter how little they may seem.
It motivates you. Though, you may not be where you want to be yet. You have certainly not been stagnant.
Get rid of negativity
Bid good riddance to things that don’t add any positive values to your life. If they are not helping you become the best version of yourself, they are a burden.
This applies to people, too. Don’t be too shy to let go of such people because they could be a barrier to your progress. Review your circle!
Always make positive declarations about yourself. Make a list of positive statements and confess them every day, e.g. I am strong; I can handle and break any challenge that comes my way.
Study shows that humans become what they think predominantly in their hearts.
Seek medical help
The importance of seeking medical expertise can’t be stressed enough. Merely having a midlife crisis tells that one’s state of well-being has been compromised.
It is vital to reach out to a professional during this period as a lack of proper care could lead to mental illness and even suicidal thoughts.
Talk to a mentor
The 20s is an age bracket that needs a lot of guidance. Newly exposed to the realities of life, you need a well-experienced person to help you walk right through the transition.
Someone who is not necessarily financially wealthy but successful. Well-versed in your career choice while being broadly knowledgeable and goal-oriented. Not obsessed.
Having such people in your circle will help you scale life challenges.
While you review your life, remember that your 20s should be all about growth and development.
Failure at this life stage shouldn’t be considered tragic because it’s only a new lesson learnt to help you devise a better strategy.
Live and learn! Quarter life crisis is only a phase!