Fear dressed as Quarter-life crisis

20-thriving, 20-favorite, 20-forever young, 20-wow, 20-oh no I am growing old, 20-fuck I can not find a job, 20-broken relationship, 20-heartbreaks, 20-reality check, 20-fine, 20-when are you giving me grand kids, 20-when are you getting married, 20-paying your own bills, 20-waking up everyday to put up with annoying workmates, 20-FEARFUL.

Very many young adults between the ages of 20-30 spend a large chunk of their lives feeling anxious and under pressure due to money, appearance and career related worries as well as fears about the future. This makes this age the most vulnerable to depression because some feel they have no one to talk to about their concerns, leaving them to face their fears alone.

The unavoidable comparisons with their mentors when they were still their age. Some of their age-mates have made it already so they feel disappointed in themselves. At this age, you are trying to balance the curve of what family, friends & society expect from you and what you expect from yourself. Close to 75% of young adults go through;

Fear of Failure

Afraid of taking risks and chances in pursuit of what you love because you are afraid of failing at it. This kind of fear is a major set back for talent, creativity & innovation, happiness or even change. This is stopping you from being the best version of yourself and is keeping you under the umbrella of “I guess we will never know.” Sad!

How about we embrace the “at least I tried mindset”? The greatest risk you can ever take is not taking the risk at all. We are young and we’re meant to explore our world. So, if you’ve tried once, try again. If you’ve never tried, then try now. We only know how to deal with failure if we fail. But wait a minute, what if you actually try and succeed? Huh!

Old people in their latest years of life regret what they never attempted to do at a younger age more than what they did wrong. They are are living with unanswered questions of “what if, what would have, if only I had…” because they were too scared to take on the risk. Tap into those fears, go forth and exhaust your potential. It is part of the plan.

Fear of belonging

Aka FOMO (Fear of Missing Out), a type of fear often experienced by people with low self esteem. They try to go out of their way to please others so as to fit in social circles and build their confidence. We can not blame you for trying but keep reminded that it’s is not as necessary as you think. Work on yourself and the right circle will draw itself.

Reminds me of the “young-ins” on twitter who tweet a lot about sex (most of which they hardly understand) because it draws attention and following. So scared of being irrelevant that you go out of your way to attract a crowd of people who in real life are just on vibes. They are not even your friends. Pathetic! isn’t it?

Direct all that clout chasing effort to building an attractive brand for yourself. Learn more, take your time and understand your ambitions – then go ahead and execute them one by one. TRUST THE PROCESS!

Fear of the Future

Guilty as accused! The uncertainties that come with thoughts of the future are quite tense and very unavoidable. Growing up, we all had aspirations to become doctors, lawyers, pilots etc until the difficulties of reality set in and we lost the zeal to keep going. Look at us, all grown up and trying to do whatever there is for survival.

All over social media everyone is ranting about how their resolutions for this year have gone down the drain. Even those that had not started on them are using it as a scapegoat. The future looks very uncertain especially in regards to the economy. That means more tension for young adults; new at the job so you have been laid off, supposed to finish that degree and get the promised job but now that’s not possible, you were mid-way your mental health journey and now your anxiety is back to 100, you had just graduated and in search of a job, then boom all the offices are closed. You are not an “essential worker”.

Drop the deceptive notion that life will unfold easily and as you planned.
It is very important to understand that life has never been easy. We experience challenges at different points in our lives and these challenges come to build us and make us mature in faith and in strength. Much to say that it is okay to fear but it is not okay to let fear limit your exploration and zeal to pursue your goals. Stay put.

Fear of loneliness and thirst for intimacy

At this age many of us are afraid of being alone and desire intimacy and relationships .We yearn to be loved even when we can not love ourselves. And honestly, that is where we go wrong. We are too thirsty for love but are we ready for the price of the quench? This leaves many frog jumping from one relationship to another in search of soap opera love and afraid to be alone. Welcome to reality! A generation of heart broken young bitter adults. Not forgetting the pressure from the relatives, ”when are we seeing our in-law?” That is a whole other chapter of stress and anxiety of its own.

You are feeling lonely because even “you don’t got you!” If you loved yourself enough, you’d be able to see beyond those flaws and imperfections that weigh you down. Self-love gives you immunity against the need for approval because it helps you understand your worth.
It lifts your confidence as a young person and you are be able to build right and awesome relationships given that your personality and actions are not corrupted but rather from your inner self.

Fear of societal backlash

First of all, I’ll start by saying that this is very harmful to you, your goals and your mental health. Most times, we end up doing things that do not make us happy because we are scared of backlash from whoever it may concern. Depressed people will not speak up because they are scared of being called dramatic. Rape victims are scared of seeking justice because they’ll ask for evidence and backlash from rape apologists. You are not doing fashion, art or design because society affiliates such with not being serious with life. So how is your worry (about what people will say) helping you?

Occasionally, fear bleeds from misplaced trust. We put our trust so much on people, our circumstances, our dreams or ambitions and we idolize our society even more than we do with God. Taking that leap of faith and doing what you feel is your calling can go a very long way. Anything done with love, faith and self belief is bound to work out right regardless of when, how and what anyone else has to say about it. Speak up about things that are not going right with you. Do not let your fear downplay your rights.

Fear of taking the high road

You can choose to do it the easy way or the hard way. Life is a very big paradox, you can live your life right and still not make it while your “reckless friends” just thrive through effortlessly. Imagine not living your best life because you are playing the good cop card and in the end, the bad cops are the ones winning. Tragic! Reading all those books and earning that degree on merit only for your job to be taken by a Minister’s kid who has connections. Takes us back to the discussion of CGPA versus connections – story for another day.

Remember to take off time and work on self development, learn new skills that will give you added advantage over others. Do things with an aim of becoming the best version of yourself. You will be surprised by how far your effort can take you.

Hopefully by the time mid-life crisis sets in, you will be ready to take on the bet.

5 thoughts on “Fear dressed as Quarter-life crisis

  1. Being a young adult is very tricky tbh. Obviously you’re new at this (adulthood) but very few people care to take you through. You actually have to look for “mentors”.
    But i believe our parents or guardians should be the ones doing this but in most african homes or families, kids are detached from their parents. Kids are not allowed to make mistakes and are often dragged other than being corrected

    Liked by 1 person

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