The following is a draft I wrote in May of 2022, well deep into my unemployment mania. It’s been almost 2 years, and it’s uncanny how much this sentiment still resonates with me now, as an employee contemplating another life transition.

Is this just what a quarter life crisis feels like, or will this last forever?

Well into my unemployment era, I often find myself sinking deeper into a state of total confusion and hopelessness as to what my life is supposed to be. I seem to have lost that zest for a long and successful career that I have yearned for since forever. The career I chose seems flawed and broken; the parts that make up the right career do not fit in this one.

I feel like I’m drifting. Taking up space. Wasting my life. Doing the bare minimum to exist. Yet I’m not. I’m learning, investing, and healing. But all these matter not when I weigh my self-worth.

Like all the self-inflicted wounds I whisper to myself, without a career I am worth nothing.

I am so scared. I am scared of being rejected and handling another blow to my already wounded identity. I am so scared of getting another job and experiencing the loss of control of time that I am so familiar with. I am so scared of taking another route because I don’t really believe I can do it.

This feeling weighs on me daily. It paralyzes me, traps me in a past I can’t forget.

I read somewhere that passion can be categorized into the following: spiritual, neurological, physiological and environmental.

  • Spiritual. You need to do ask yourself what excites you. You need to look back on when work was fulfilling.
  • Neurological. Our brains are wired differently, so we are drawn to different things. What makes your brain tick? Problem-solving, creating, tinkering, etc.
  • Physiological. What kind of work flow do you like? Do you like routine, or being more dynamic? Work 24h on call, or work 1 week on/off? You might like to write, but the way you write might be different; if you pick the wrong physiologic routine, you might be screwing yourself.
  • Environmental. Do you like to work in a team, or work freelance? Do you work best alone, with a manager, or with a group?

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