Here you are.
Broke and with no clue of what the hell to do in your life. All your plans, goals, your ideas, dreams and projects and aspirations are just a blurred mirage in an endless desert of hope.
When you were a kid you thought you could be whoever you desired, but now that graduation has become a far away memory you don’t know where to begin to put the pieces of your life together.
All you do now is freak out about your future, your relationships and your career…in case you already have one.
So, welcome to the club of the 20-something, where your stomach hurts every single time you think about student loans or paying rent; Where you left university with the certainty that you had completed the wrong course; Where you try to figure out some crazy ways to make money online with quick-rich schemes; Where you’re struggling to make it appear like you’re not struggling; Where you spend long nights lying awake trying to figure out what the F@*k to do in your life; Where you learn about loneliness and you wish you were born a cat (because cats have an amazing life: sleep, eat, play and repeat all over again.)
Sometimes you just want to run away from everyone and everything, screw up all your plans and go on a solo backpacking adventure around Europe for an undefined period of time…a trip you can’t afford to take because, let me emphasize that, you are B-R-O-K-E.
But let me tell you something. Going through a quarter life crisis is not a bad thing at all. It’s actually a blessing.
Let me explain that.
When you find yourself questioning your life decisions, your purpose, your passion and your entire personal world, you are expressing your eagerness to grow, learn new things and live an exciting life. You don’t want to be a person who blindly follow the crowd, but you want to be one who aim to create something special and unique. You want to discover your talents and what truly makes you YOU.
Since I turned 20 few years ago, I realized that life is not always fair. You have to change your attitude, shift your mindset, know how to overcome problems, take risks and work your butt off to get something worthwhile in return. Navigating this rough and uncontrollable ocean that life is made me a more stronger, ambitious and confident human being. Even if I’m still on the quest of fully figuring out who I am and how to earn 1M per year, I have made a lot of progresses so far.
During this long self-discovery journey I learned and realized many important things that I’d like to share with you, right now, to help you survive and thrive in your 20s.
1. Change your inner conversation
When I hit my quarter life crisis I felt sick, physically and psychologically. I invested thousands of dollars into my education to learn skills for a career that…oh gosh I can’t even find the right words to describe how pissed I am.
I lost all my certainty. I felt confused. I hoped for months that some divine force would save me from my misery.
But obviously nothing changed, not until I’ve changed my attitude.
Not knowing what the heck you want to do in your life can piss you off A LOT. It stresses you out and makes you feel small and insignificant, and sometimes also very very hysterical like an old cat lady. But constantly reminding yourself of how good you are at turning everything you touch into crap won’t help you anyway. Therefore screw up your fears and doubts and take that risk. Experience something new and go searching for what’s missing in your life.
And here’s a piece of advice straight from my mom: “Don’t be a dumbass. You have a whole life ahead of you!” :)
2. Losing friends becomes normal
As you decide to shift path, challenge the status-quo and discover why you are going through this “twenty-something” crisis, you’ll notice that some of your friendships become strained.
I had to pay myself the bill of friendship when I started my journey as an online entrepreneur. Probably my dreams, ambitions and aspirations have produced jealousy, resentment and other negative emotions in my friends’ mind. Who knows? And frankly, I don’t care anymore.
So it’s good to be aware that when you go against the current and you consider starting down a new path, some of your friends will no longer be there for you. Your social life starts becoming very selective. Therefore, expect to spend a lot of time just with yourself.
3. Your degree is just a receipt
Don’t get me wrong. Education is important, very important. People have relentlessly fought for equal access to education. They have raised, and are still raising, their voices to make education accessible to anyone, regardless of their social status, because educated people can build a better tomorrow. I totally agree with that.
But what I’m trying to say here is that most of the time we let our degree define who we are, holding ourselves back from pursuing something that stimulate our curiosity and makes us happier.
Just because you’ve graduated in something that no longer makes you interested and excited about, it doesn’t mean that you’re forced to do it for the rest of your life. That doesn’t necessarily have to be the case. If you don’t want to live a life full of regrets is better to change your path now that you’re in your 20-something, rather than ending up being an adult constantly complaining of your awful job. Later is not impossible, but it’s just harder.
I know, opening your mind to the possibility of a different path is incredibly terrifying, but you have nothing to lose. You just have to self-master new skills that will somehow guide you to creating the life you want.
Therefore, don’t let your degree define you.
4. Money is important
Even if it’s not the only thing by which you should measure your success, it’s important to keep in mind the money rules the world. I know is kind of sad, but it’s the truth. If you want to travel the world, have a roof over your head, and buy random super WTF items on amazon, you need cash, baby.
This is the right time to start learning some finances stuff. You need to learn how to make a plan to save more, earn more, and become a human-dollar printing machine. Here’s a list of some great books on finance that you can buy on Amazon.com: Rich Dad Poor Dad, The Daily Trading Coach: 101 Lessons for Becoming Your Own Trading Psychologist by Brett N. Steenbarger, Chart Your Way to Profits: The Online Trader’s Guide to Technical Analysis by Tim Knight, The Money Book for the Young, Fabulous & Broke by Suze Orman.
5. You’re only young once
This is the best time to give up and sacrifice a lot of things, and to take some risks my friend, because there’s a lot less for you to lose out on.
You have less obligations and responsibilities. Leaving your current underpaid but safe 9-5 (I’d say 14-6) job to start your own company, that’s a risk. Becoming a full-time Youtuber? That’s a risk. Backpacking the world by documenting your adventure with your GoPro? Please take me with you.
The chance to learn new things, to discover new horizons, to better yourself, to have amazing experiences will never be higher than it is right now.
I know, taking risks is a scary thing. You’re going to be nervous. You’re going to have doubts. And 90% of the time you’ll shit your pants before making a small/big decision, but it’s worth a try.
At least, if you fail, the worst thing that happens is that you have an incredible story to tell, a unique experience that you can use as WOW factor for a job interview.
But no matter what the result, get your hands dirty, feel alive, pursue your dreams and take the chance!
So, your 20s are definitely a turbulent time. You realize that you’re poor, ugly, broke and that money may actually buy a slice of happiness. You realize that many of your friends are “unfriending” you on Facebook and in real life for no good reasons, and that the majority of people are douchbags. You realize that your career path will most likely to change to undefined destination, but at the end you also realize that you’re doing better than you think.
This is your time…It’s your beautiful messy life. Live it, fully.
Cheers to your 20s.