When I was eighteen and on the edge of the cliff that was the rest of my life, I knew that I would grow up to be something special. Someone who was educated, not just in the school sense but in the life sense. Someone who people enjoyed being in the company of, someone known for something. Someone who inspired and changed peopleʼs lives.
I was going to do something with my life. I was going to live life. I knew it, I just knew that I would do something great.
I graduated 5 years ago. I am now a twenty-something. A few years ago I would have said my life was a grand adventure. That I did inspire and change peopleʼs lives. But then I turned twenty two. I knew that there had to be something more than the job I was working at. So I embarked on another year of education.
Twenty three came. I had gotten another diploma. Twenty three and a half came and I am still unemployed. Where is this greatness that I so believed I would achieve? Where is my so called life?
Purpose. Meaning. Signiﬁcance. Without those three very important words, our lives can be summed up into one more powerful word. Nothing. Life is a big nothing.
Have you ever felt like there is absolutely no purpose in your life? Nine-to-ﬁve seems absolutely meaningless in the long run. Would anyone notice if you just stopped existing?
Humanity is a strange thing. If we think that people donʼt care if we exist, we choose not to exist. We choose to live a life void of connection. A life void of passion and desire. We settle into the train of thought that if we simply exist and do the bare minimum, perhaps life will pass us by more quickly. If a person does not have any expectations they will not be let down.
As I sit here contemplating the meaning of my purposeless, meaningless, insignificant existence, I have realized something. Something so profound yet simple that I can not believe I havenʼt realized it before. Life is meant to be lived. Cliche, I know.
The point of life is to live. To live is to have a point. I am not at the point where I can say how it is we achieve such a life. But I do know it is not by sitting at home alone every night of the week watching Seinfeld reruns. Life is out there. Maybe we all just have to grasp it in our own way. And once you grasp it, do not let it go.
Twenty-something is the new midlife crisis. I challenge you to turn the midlife crisis into a midlife re-evaluation and realize that there is more to this than you think. That life is not just to merely exist, but to live.