How to Navigate a Quarter-Life Crisis

Sophie Miura

It was three minutes to midnight and I was lying in bed in a mild state of panic. I’m a little embarrassed to admit why: I was a few short moments shy of turning one year older, and suddenly the weight of my career choices, relationships, and life decisions felt like a crushing force. Believe me, I know how ridiculous that sounds. I used to scoff at the idea of a quarter-life crisis. At the time, it seemed like a smart headline to capture the attention of dramatic 20-somethings riddled with stress. That is, until it happened to me.

The so-called millennial meltdown isn’t new, but fresh research suggests the phenomenon exists and is prolific. This month, the Harvard Business Review declared the late 20s as the scientifically backed “worst time in your life” (their words—no writer embellishments here), and findings from the University of Greenwich reveal almost half of women experience some form of crisis before age 35. But it’s not all bad news: The same study found that 80% of participants looked back on it as positive phase which made them feel in control of their future.

Stop and take a deep breath. These are the best science-backed ways to navigate a quarter-life crisis, from someone who knows. 

Looking for more information, advice, or personal stories about a quarter-life crisis? Shop the books below. 

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