A lot of people come to me -especially people in their 30’s- and say that they are lost and that their life right now is nothing like what they imagined for themselves when they were teenagers or fresh graduates.
Why do they feel so? and why do they start having these feelings specifically in the ’30s? that’s what we will discuss in this article.
But first, I want to start by answering why do people usually start having these feelings in the ’30s.
According to a research held by the ‘’Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences’’ and covered by ''The Cut'' magazine, the years before beginning a brand-new decade — ages 29, 39, and so on — tend to be spent in self-reflection.
And when people do reflect, what do they usually think about? relationships or career.
That’s why most of the people will start evaluating their life journey’s and what did they achieve compared to others and compared to what they expected to achieve. And since 29 is usually the first self-reflection year, that’s why you usually see a lot of people in the 30’s evaluating themselves and maybe feeling disappointed.
Another reason that I realized based on my personal experience is that most people tend to consider the 20’s something like ‘’the fun decade’’ where you are allowed to try new things, have fun and make mistakes freely, while they consider the 30’s ‘’the serious decade’’ the time where they must achieve something and achieve this thing fast, and that there is no more time for errors and trials.
And it is ironic how the people make this jump. From one day they are saying to themselves, ‘’I have to chill out and relax. The whole world is still in front of me and I am still young.’’ to suddenly ‘’Oh my god, I am already late, and I am getting old and I have to run super-fast.’’.
And when the people self-reflect, what happens afterward?
They either decide that their life is good or that they need to make some changes in their private or professional lives. But usually, having the courage and will to start these changes is easier said than done.
Because the moment that they see clearly that it is time to change and leave a job, a company, a spouse, the country, or start a business is the moment that they start wondering about lots of things.
Some thoughts such as ‘’Am I going to succeed or not?’’, ‘’What if I failed and lost more time?’’, ‘’What will the people say about me?’’, ‘’I want but I do not know where to start.’’ will start popping into their heads and the uncertainty and fear of the unknown will paralyze them.
Not only this, but the lack of emotional support from the people around them will be huge in a time that these people need this support the most. Because unfortunately, the societies that we live within discourages taking risky actions when you are in the ’30s or when you are married and having a family.
So, these people will start feeling more and more lonely and unsupported and isolated from others. Because they know that each time, they will meet others and share with them their thoughts about ‘’change’’ or taking a risky action, they will get criticized and will leave the discussion confused, worried and uncertain more than before.
And here is something important that I would love to make clear regarding the importance of emotional support. For any project or new action to succeed, you usually need two important things:
1- Good emotional & mental states. which means having strong emotional support from the people around you+ internal faith in yourself+ belief in your project or idea or action.
2- Tools and strategies to achieve this goal.
And the first factor, which is the emotional & mental states, is far more important than the tools.
And by the way, if you look at these two factors, you will find them also stated in a logic sequence. When you have a new idea, you always go and share it with your close friends or family members. You want them to support the idea and inspire you more and make you feel that it is a winning idea. And then after they acknowledge it, you try to find a way to make this idea a reality or to find an answer to the question ‘’Where to start and what should I do?’’
And usually, the answer to this question is a little easier if the action that you want to take is just changing your job. Because maybe what you will lack is emotional support from your friends and family members, because changing jobs does not require lots of tools or strategies.
But what if the action is bigger and the risk is higher? Here lies the problem because suddenly the person who wants to make a change will not find both. Neither emotional support nor the tools and strategies to know where to start.
And most people stop here. They know deep inside of them that it is time to pursue an old dream or to make a correction in their lives. But with the lack of support and unclarity and not knowing where to start, they get confused, lose confidence in themselves and remain where they are.
And that is what makes a lot of people especially in their 30’s unsatisfied but still afraid to change.
Now I want to hear your opinion regarding this article. Share with me in the comments section below if you like it or not, and share with me your opinion: did I miss any other factor that makes people do not want to change or unsatisfied in the 30’s?
Share with me your thoughts and see you in the next article.