By Rick Garcia

LOS ANGELES ( — “Why have I been working so hard to get here?” “This is not what I want to do!”

They’re only in their 20s, but already they’re disillusioned with life.

It’s known as the “quarter-life crisis”, similar to the mid-life crisis for people in their 50s – but now it’s happening to young people.

“You’re trapped in this relationship, you’re trapped in this job, you don’t really see a future for yourself,” said Carin Gorell of Self Magazine.

“The promise of our parents was we can do whatever we want,” said 26-year-old Marjorie Korn. “You find yourself a couple years later behind a desk, wondering where that promise went.”

For many, this crisis hits sometime after college, when experts say the pressure to succeed that this generation has experienced from a very early age results in an identity meltdown.

Psychiatrist Drew Ramsey says this generation has spent so much time working toward a life in the future, they’ve skipped living the moment – and now they’re exhausted and dissatisfied.

Korn decided the only way to end her quarter-life crisis was to leave everything behind and start over.

“I knew that I had to make a change,” she said. “I’m so much happier…I listened to what my insides were telling me.”

While that may not work for everyone, Ramsey said there are a few steps 20-somethings can take to help get past a quarter life crisis:

  • Start by giving themselves a break and stop putting so much pressure on themselves;
  • Accept that the future is largely unknown; and
  • It’s OK to make some mistake along the way.

All these, Ramsey says, are keys to living a fuller and happier life.


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