“I was experiencing a quarter-life crisis!”
Whoa! That caught my attention! The speaker was in his early thirties and was recounting a difficult period in his life after he was fired from his first job. I thought the speaker was coining a new phrase until I researched it and to my chagrin, discovered nearly 200 million entries on the internet.
The more familiar term, midlife crisis, is usually defined as occurring between the ages of forty five to sixty years. A quarter life crisis occurs when a person is in their mid twenties to early thirties. Some surveys suggest that over 80% of millennials have experienced some form of this crisis. What triggers these crises? A midlife crisis may be triggered as a person becomes increasingly aware of their own mortality as evidenced by their own health issues, the passing of loved ones, and the perception that they have not accomplished as much in their lives as they originally set out to do. A quarter life crisis may be triggered by insecurity and doubt over one’s career choice, relationships, and financial stability.
Regardless whether we call it a quarter or midlife crisis, the common link is anxiety. It is not limited to a quarter life or midlife, all stages of our life are susceptible to anxiety. It is how we respond to this anxiety that determines our action and whether it evolves into a crisis. Sometimes elaborate measures are taken: new wardrobe, new possessions, all to demonstrate relevance and reaffirm one’s self-worth. With others, withdrawal and depression may result. It does not have to be this way. Once again, God reassures us and provides the answer.
Do not be anxious about anything. Instead, in every situation, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, tell your requests to God. And the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7 (NET)
As the theologian Reinhold Niebuhr wrote nearly a century ago, “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.” We don’t have to undertake elaborate measures or withdraw when we encounter anxiety. When we bring our issues, concerns, and problems to Him, our anxiety will not turn into a crisis. God created us. He knows our deepest pains and our limits. He promises to guard our hearts and minds through faith and belief in Jesus Christ.
Love and trust in the Lord; seek His will in your life.