Why Do I Feel Jaded At 23?

Khánh Hmoong
Khánh Hmoong

Exhausted. Humiliated. Defeated. Three honest words I would never admit to feeling on any resume or cover letter.

Here I stand only a few months away from turning the ripe age of 24. I’m young but I’m verging into my mid twenties and I want so much more than I currently have. I know I’m not alone, I raise a glass to my fellow college graduates who continue to feel under-qualified and discouraged after the fifth rejection email they’ve received this week. Before I get any further I need to add that this isn’t me whining about not landing my dream job or having opportunities thrown at me. Not at all. This is a reflection on how I, and so many other twenty-something’s, find themselves feeling jaded. Why do I feel jaded at 23?

I am in constant cycling; hope, apply, become exhausted, depressed, and reflection. I always begin feeling optimistic and having a positive outlook on all the opportunities out there. I take all of that positive energy and I push it into fine-tuning my resume and submitting cover letters I feel proud of. This process usually lasts about a week and I’ve applied to every job I desire and qualify for the exhaustion hits.

My eyes are weak from staring at screens to long and my head hurts from over analyzing. I begin to experience inexplicable anxiety over wasted college funds and disappointing others and myself. Some ridiculous scene of me homeless on the streets finds it’s way into my daydreams and I lose my appetite. I find myself not wanting to get out of bed let alone open up my laptop for the chance that I might find rejection once more sitting atop my inbox. I think through the choices I’ve made and second-guess myself. I cry. I take the time and do the things I need to do to recuperate my spirits and then slowly but surely that burst of pure ecstasy pierces my heart; optimism. The cycle never ends.

I should not be jaded at 23 and neither should you. At the end of the day we don’t know what tomorrow will bring. Today might be hard, today might really suck, today might make you feel like you’re not good enough. Tomorrow might be better. There’s no way to know, so hold onto the small things in life that make you smile, make you better, and fill you up with promise.

Positivity is a bitch to hang onto but trust me it’s important. So here’s to 24 and the promise of endless possibilities. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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