A lot of us “wake up” (I say with my fingers making quotation marks) when we’re somewhere between 25 and 30. We look at our lives and ask ourselves, “What was I thinking? I don’t want this?  Now what do I do?”

Well, if that’s you, there’s hope, so stay tuned to this Authenticity Advantage post!

I was doing some research on the millennial generation and someone mentioned all the change that we go through when we are between 25-30. I have to confess, I hadn’t really thought about it.  

Why 25 to 30? What’s so unique about that age group?

An interesting fact is that most people’s brains are not completely developed until they are 25. (I think it was a little later for me) The significance of that fact is that most of our “thinking” before 25 was heavily influenced by emotion.  So, now you have a valid excuse for all the dumb things you did as a teenager and when you were in your early 20’s.

Only after 25 are we able to effectively reason through problems without being mostly influenced by how we feel emotionally. It is a significant time of physiological change for all of us, and it seems that this change coincides with a period in our lives where we have to make a ton of big decisions.

All those decisions you made before 25 – like if, and where you went to college, the major you chose, where you lived, who you dated or maybe even married—all of those choices were either heavily influenced by your emotions, or made for you by people you thought you could trust.

But then it seems like a lot of us “wake up” somewhere between 25 and 30.

After 25 many of us realize the life we’re living is not like what we expected. And we ask ourselves, “what was I thinking? I don’t want this? Now what?” “Do I continue doing what I don’t really want because it’s the easy path, or do I decide to make a change?”

So, what about you?

You may have to deal with a lot of issues when you are 25, like:

  • Are you getting overwhelmed at work and you don’t even like your job?
  • Are you doing something that is professional enough or cool enough?
  • Are you stuck in the rat race?
  • What happened to your social life?
  • Are you drifting apart from your friends just because of the differences in your incomes? And is it becoming unbearable to hang out with peers who earn a lot more than you do?
  • Are some of your “exes” now married and may even have children? Does that bother you?
  • Did you just realize that “paying taxes” is something that eats into your lifestyle, and that paying taxes is only going to get progressively worse for the rest of your life?
  • Did you figure out you you are masking your personality to get ahead in a job?
  • Do you feel depressed at the thought of having to conform to the world just to get by?
  • Does it almost feel like you are mourning over a version of yourself that is disappearing?

I can relate. All those feelings and thoughts hit me like a ton of bricks at 25…OK, maybe 30.

You may have heard of Charlie Tremendous Jones’ famous quote:  

“You will be the same person in five years as you are today, except for the people you meet and the books you read.”

For me, that was a problem because when I was 25 I didn’t read any books and I only met other Marines.

25 year-olds today, Millennials

I think most of my generation gets frustrated with millennials. They’ll say things like “Just pull up your big girl pants”, or “man up”, and “get on with it.” “Quit being such a snowflake.” I have to confess having those thoughts too, until I took a look at what’s different about being a 25 to 30-year-old today.

There is so much information and so many choices today that decision making is much more difficult than when I was 25. And for some reason millennials have this idea that they have to get it right the first time, like making a mistake is unforgivable. That wasn’t the case when I was 25.

In addition, I also had help, even though I didn’t realize it. Here’s what I had to help me with my decisions.

  1. A dad who was there for me, and loved me even when I screwed up
  2. A Faith I believed in
  3. Leaders to watch, and examples to follow

Most of you between 25 and 30 now

  1. Don’t have a dad you can trust
  2. You don’t have a church
  3. And there is no leadership in your lives to help

My generation doesn’t relate to that.

This might help

Here a few things I would have done differently, things that could help you now–

  1. I would have started looking for my purpose sooner
  2. I would have taken the time to discover who I really am
  3. I would have seriously considered what I want to do with my life
  4. I would have seriously considered what I wanted to have with my life

Most people won’t make a change until something moves them, or they discover they have another choice. Instead, they wallow in confusion. All the information and choices that are available today only serve to increase that confusion. How can you tell which information or advice is good and which is just BS?

Confusion is the enemy, but clarity is what makes a difference.

That is why I wrote Authenticity Advantage. To help people like you discover you have another choice.

Clarity starts with realizing who you are and discovering what you want.

You can choose to use your Authenticity Advantage, or you can choose to pretend to be something you are not, but that’s exhausting!

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