09 April 2013

In Your 20s: Living the Quarter Life

from the movie "The Graduate"

Living the Quarter Life is like being tugged in opposite directions. Some people around your age--perhaps friends or classmates whom you used to play jackstones with during break times or people you were getting wasted with during your party hey days would either start getting hitched or sperminated (ergo pregnant), promoted to higher positions in their respective careers or even have their own booming businesses. 

And then there's you, appearing to be "stuck" between being young and old. Maybe you're single or in a relationship that may or may not lead to the altar or being in a job that doesn't make you feel fulfilled or happy or makes you feel like you're in some kind of career rut. The feeling as if you're not moving according to the grand "plan" where by your late 30's you're suppose to have a financially stable job and supporting your own hypothetical spouse and mini-me's. The seeping paranoia that how come everyone seems to be moving forward and you're still floating somewhere in between. Oh the aimlessness, frustrations and whatnots of the inevitable and over thinking!
Benjamin: I'm just...
Mr. Braddock: ...worried?
Benjamin: Well...
Mr. Braddock: About what?
Benjamin: I guess about my future.
Mr. Braddock: What about it?
Benjamin: I don't know. I want it to be...
Mr. Braddock: ...to be what?
Benjamin: ...Different.
-from The Graduate (1967) 
I've graduated from college for almost two years now and apart from learning that stepping out in the real world for the first time is like going through another phase of puberty (read here), we also have to deal with the inevitable "Quarter Life Crisis". Some would define this phase as the adjustment period when one person transitions to becoming a full-pledged adult. As for me, I see it as some sort of job interview (or life interview?). You know how when you're applying for jobs they usually ask how you see yourself in their company 10 years from now? Answer that in terms of how you see yourself, your life in general 10 years from now and huzzah you just found your golden ticket to get out of QLC!

We were always told that we should follow our dreams. When I was in highschool I already knew I wanted to become an Interior Designer, it was my dream career. And so I went to college and took up a course on BS-Interior Design. Immediately after that I went ahead and took the board exams to get my professional license. When I passed, I was ecstatic beyond words. I was finally and could officially call myself as an Interior Designer, my ultimate career dream! When the elated feeling toned down and reality starts settling in there it came...........

........"and then what?".

To say that I was at loss is a severe understatement. I didn't know what to do next. Should I join a firm or venture on my own? Should I specialize in this area or take up masters in this so and so? In short, I have to find another dream, something less vague and more tangible......a goal (or goals). But of course, like anything else in life, balance is an important factor. We worry too much about discovering our goals and preparing for our "future" that we sometimes forget about living in the present.

I suppose living in our 20's is about relearning, rediscovering and having a poop load of realizations about ourselves and life as we know it. It is the time where we plant the seeds or set the foundations of how we wanted to grow out or become after those 10 years. It is about identifying and remaking your dreams and transforming them into goals. It is the time where we are young but can legally drink alcohol during lunch. It is the time to regret nothing. If it's good then it's awesome, if it's bad then it's an experience to learn from. Live, laugh, love and discover--that is living in your 20s is like and perhaps even beyond. And yes, I'm aware most of what I've just said are from motivational quotes on Instagram. #iregretnothing

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