The reasons why people have a quarter life crisis is still under debate. It is usually recognised as stemming from unmet expectations and a difficulty in making future decisions in life. However, I believe there is another reason why these symptoms occur.
Taken together, the symptoms mentioned above actually sound like a combination of symptoms from the middle stages of the classical five stages of grief - anger, bargaining (dressed up as indecision and a desire to just do whatever crazy thing that comes to mind - but really it's just plain old bargaining if you think about it) and depression (which is why 'nothing feels particularly right' and why sometimes people have low energy during this period).
But what are these people actually grieving? Different people have different theories. Here's ours.
The majority of these people are yet quite far off from seriously needing to ponder their deaths, after all. What they are grieving is their youth, their feeling of specialness (which they were brought up to believe in), and the dreams they have had since childhood. Whilst dreams take longer to achieve nowadays, their self belief and their youthfulness would have set them up for life, to last the duration of this prolonged ride. However, for a combination of reasons (which we will explore in this website and in our upcoming book), society is stealing these things away from them prematurely, however, and with it their confidence to continue to dream also comes to an end. Although physically they are not old yet, with this mindset they may as well be just going through the everyday motions of life whilst waiting out the rest of their days as old-hearted, dreamless people, for the rest of their lives. Although it will be quite a long time before they finally leave this Earth physically, spiritually they may as well already be living-dead people.
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