It’s tough being in your 20’s. I know, because I’ve been stuck here for the past 5 years. Like most of you, if not all, I also underwent the so-called quarter life crisis. There was a time when I was desperate for answers. I keep asking, “Am I gonna be stuck here at my work for the rest of my life? Is this what I am really called to do? What if there are better opportunities?” This started last year before I turned 25, realizing that, I am already quarter-way through life without savings, insurance, assets, etc. Yes, without a single cent in my bank account! Imagine! I was in full panic mode last year!
Alas, after 6 months of soul-searching, I am proud to say that I still do not have the answers. Hahaha! (Akala niyo nag-ala Muhammad Ali or Dalai Lama ako na mala-propetang magpapahayag ng “Secrets to Living a Happy Life” ano?) But I realized that we really wouldn’t know what we want in life unless it’s right in front of us. The problem with me is, I have many talents and I want to use all of them. I want to be a wedding, acoustic, band, a capella or chorale singer, or just a singer. I want to be a teacher, or build my own preschool. I want to be the boss of my own business – not only for me and my family, but also for my friends who have not finished college. I want to be an events coordinator. I wanna be a writer. I want to go to places and travel a lot, and interview people. I want to be a lot of people at the same time! I can’t really decide which to pursue. So the best thing to do while still young is to try them all!
What made the past months bearable – albeit me still being clueless about life – is that I have started to make small, baby steps.
- I have no savings and I want to earn more, earn passive income, even, so I started saving P5,000 a month. 10% of which goes to equity investment (which is doing good now, btw), and another 10% for savings, while the 80% goes to my insurance. I can die now, really, and my parents can have P1,800,000.00 in cold cash!! *knocks on wood*. I believe that insurance, more than it being a gift to ourselves, is a gift to our parents or loved ones. They wouldn’t have to worry about us anymore if we get hospitalized or if we die. Come on, let’s face it – shiz happens, and they might come sooner rather than later, so might as well save up for the rainy day. My mom thinks it’s too early to invest or to be insured, but hey, think about the realities of life or whatnot… For others, what I did may be a small thing, but for me, it’s really a huge decision in my life! At least now, I’m not so happy-go-lucky anymore; I think about the future, and I cannot be without income, because I need to consider paying for my insurance monthly. For this, I am so proud of myself *gives self a pat on the back*.
- I have finally resigned from my writing and NGO work – the work that I oh so love – after 4 long years. I don’t know what I was thinking. I kept complaining, for the longest time, that I love my job yet it gives me little salary, long hours and piles of work load, yet I have not done anything about it — until now. It’s divine intervention, really, that I finally decided to quit this job, if I have plans of building my own family in the future. This job’s salary cannot support any other individual than me. I can barely feed myself; I cannot imagine having to feed a child with what I’m earning! How I finally decided that it’s the end of the line deserves a separate blog post though.
With these baby steps toward my extreme make-over version 2.0, I am very, very happy.
I think what I’m trying to say is that, I complain a lot. Life is tough on me, like it usually is on everybody else. But the difference is that, I am doing something about it. Complaining will get nobody nowhere, doing something about it does the job. What’s important is:
- You are obviously not happy with what you have now. So what are your alternatives?
- Sort out what you really want to do.
- Do not be a scaredy cat. Do it.
Life is still a long way ahead, and we’re far from the destination. We only have now, today, no matter how limited our knowledge is. But everything does not have to make sense now. This is the time to build on that future, to invest, to position yourself in the competitive world out there, to sow the seeds and harvest the yield later on. There is no perfect timing than today while we are still single – there is no kid or husband/wife to consider, full of energy, a blurry future waiting for that adventure to happen, while being semi-parasites as we eat off our parents’ plates and sleep in a room with air conditioning in our parents’ house. We may not understand life as it is, but remember, everything happens for a reason. Someday, everything will make sense. Remember this promise and you will be alright, just like how everything turns out to be in the end 🙂
“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” – Isaiah 41:10.