I’m so relieved that it’s time for September’s guest post! After my whirlwind weekend of life coach training, I still haven’t had the energy or focus to do any of my own writing. Thankfully, some of you are willing to step in with your own words of wisdom. This month’s guest post comes from fellow blogger and recent masters graduate (in journalism!) Vijaya Prasad. She’s currently contemplating a move to New York City to pursue a career in the media world – and I can’t wait to hear what happens in her exciting life! In her post, Vijaya reflects on 5 things she would tell her younger self upon coming face-to-face with her quarterlife crisis – great advice!
When I graduated from college, I was 22, had no idea what a ‘quarter-life’ crisis was, and thought I had all the answers. Over the last few years, I’ve learned a thing or too about how your 20s aren’t the fairy tales of perfect jobs, a fabulous closet, and the best friends a girl could ask for. Live the moment – Ever heard the cliché, it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey? Life is too short to be waiting to get to the next stage. So while you may not be in your dream job, are transitioning between jobs or school – enjoy the ride. That being said, here’s what I would tell my younger self:
5. Get involved: Work towards becoming the person you want to be – the best version of you – whether that’s someone who volunteers as a Big Brothers & Big Sisters, for an election, or works with special needs kids, it’s been said that helping others is a great way to help you feel better about yourself. Idealist is a great site for the non-profit world. Find a group to get involved with, a church/mosque/temple if that’s your thing, or even volunteer for industry specific events (tip: you can often get great discounts by offering to help out for a bit!).
4. Stay informed through blogs, newsletters, and seminars. If you are in job transition (sounds so much better than unemployed, don’t you think?), you don’t have to spend a lot of money to stay on top of what’s going on in your field. In fact, this is a great time to learn a new language, new software, or industry trends.
3. Travel — go see the world! Or maybe just your region, if you’re short on funds! For those under 26, you’ll often get discounts in European and American hostels. Cheap alternatives include couch surfing and of course staying with friends and long lost relatives.
2. Consider professional help – no, I don’t mean go find a therapist and talk about how your childhood ruined you. There are a ton of organizations out there that provide online and personal support. (Disclosure: I interviewed the owner of SheCreatesChange, a life-coaching group). One that supports a great cause is Livestrong, founded by Lance Armstrong’s foundation. This site is about creating a better version of yourself whether you want to quit smoking, drink more water, or drop a few lbs.
1. Surround yourself with a support group: whether it’s going through a divorce or deciding to go to (or drop out of) grad school, we all need a support system, a cheerleading team for those times when it feels like it’s life: 1, you:0.
You don’t have to have all the answers right now – that’s what keeps life interesting!
**There’s a Jack Kerouac quote that I’ve incorporated in my life: “What is that feeling when you’re driving away from people and they recede on the plain till you see their specks dispersing… it’s good-bye. But we lean forward to the next crazy venture beneath the skies.”** Life is an adventure – you can make all the plans you want, but it takes its own direction. I moved to Los Angeles when I was 22, with no friends in town and it was the most liberating thing that I could’ve done. Out of college, my dream was to work for the United Nations, guess what – dreams change. My current one — to make it in NYC and write for New York Magazine.