If you’re in your 30s and feel like you’re facing an existential crisis, you’re not alone. With so much upheaval in one year, 2020 has proven to be quite the catalyst for change in many people’s lives. Whether you are considering moving back home to be closer to family, switching jobs now that it’s easier to work remotely, or finally enrolling in graduate school in order to fully pursue your dreams, there are plenty of existential questions to face this year. The question is what to do when those existential feelings overwhelm you and feel insurmountable.
While therapy is one of the best options for addressing some of your existential concerns, it’s just as important to have things you can actively do. After all, you can only talk about a problem so much before you actually do something about it, and the ideas below can give you a variety of ways to blow off steam and refocus your energies. From taking a trip to doing something meaningful with your money, here are just a few ideas to address an existential crisis in your 30s.
Speak with a licensed therapist.
Although it is important to find a way forward, part of understanding and addressing your existential crisis should come from talking with someone who has the expertise to help you handle the existential anxiety you may be experiencing. This is where talking to a licensed therapist or counselor can be incredibly beneficial, since they may have insight as a third party about the issues you are facing and can help you find new strategies to implement that give you a greater sense of purpose. Of course, part of addressing an existential crisis is understanding the existential crisis definition and whether or not it applies to you.
When it comes to fully investigating the parameters of your existential crisis a therapist or counselor can provide you with the information you need to better rule out other mental health problems from your feelings of existential dread or malaise. Once you have talked to a psychologist about your mental health, it’s time to move on to some of the other strategies on this list. if none of them jump out to you right away, it may also be helpful to use this list as a topic of conversation at your next therapy session.
Donate your time or talents to a cause you believe in.
One of the greatest ways to find purpose is to volunteer or dedicate your time or money to a charitable cause that is meaningful for you. For example, maybe you decide that you are interested in joining the board of directors of an arts organization in your area that you are passionate about. Especially if you grew up with a love of the arts, getting involved with philanthropy and local or international charities is a great way to reconnect with those passions, even if you are currently in a different field. It’s worth noting that you don’t need to have a lot of money to make an impact in this area. Whether you’re a successful philanthropist like Howard Fensterman or have just decided to donate $5 a week to your local food pantry, any monetary contribution towards a cause that you are passionate about can be a great way to find purpose in your life. For example, Howard Fensterman is involved with a few different health-related causes that are near and dear to his heart, like the Colitis Foundation of America.
If you’re really strapped for cash, consider volunteering your time and talents instead of your money as a different way to make an impact. For example, you may have a passion for mentoring youth and could make a big difference by spending one day a week at a Boys & Girls Club or helping an immigrant learn English and receive tutoring free of charge. There are plenty of charitable organizations out there to connect you with these sorts of causes, so do a little bit of research after reflecting on what matters most to you and see if you can find a way to get more engaged in charitable work.
Take a trip for fun — or to find yourself.
If you’ve read or watched Eat, Pray, Love, then you know the value of a vacation and the revelations that can come from such a trip. As such, if you have some money saved up, it might be a good idea to plan a trip. Beyond relaxing, you may be able to gain some new insights or perspectives about yourself and the situation from the distance a different geographic location offers. For example, taking a cruise makes it easy to experience the world without having to worry about connecting flights or learning a different public transportation system. Since you’re in the midst of an existential crisis, why not take your cruise in style by pursuing one of the best Vilamoura boat trips the world has to offer?
Launching from Portugal, a luxury cruise can help you take some much-needed ‘me time’ while you enjoy a variety of sea sights and outdoor activities. From beautiful beaches to speed boats tours or windsurfing and another memorable experience at some of the best places for photo-ops along the Algarve coastline, you’ll make dozens of timeless moments aboard a beautiful yacht on a Vilamoura boat trip. In addition to the excitement offered by these sea sights, you’ll also be able to beat back existential anxiety and angst on your boat trip, thanks to the beauty and clarity provided by a sunset cruise and an alcoholic beverage. So many existential crises hinge on your mindset, and getting to take a Vilamoura boat tour is a great way to find a much-needed distraction and start looking for new things to do and try. In addition to offering a lot of fun, these sorts of adrenaline-raising outdoor activities can offer you a lifetime of memories and help you take stock of each good thing in your life.
When in doubt, turn to your spirituality or faith.
Just as it can be beneficial to bounce ideas off a therapist, sometimes turning to your religion or faith can offer the perspective you need to lead a more fulfilling life. One of the best books to frame these sorts of questions is Douglas J. Brouwer’s What Am I Supposed to Do with My Life? While your therapist may focus your existential questions on your career path, Brouwer helps you view your existential anxieties through the lens of the Bible and God’s word. Rather than focusing solely on questions of vocation, he suggests that one of the best ways to discover your life purpose is by focusing on two of the most powerful commandments from Jesus Christ about loving your neighbor and loving God.
When it comes to investigating your life purpose, What Am I Supposed to Do with My Life? is helpful in a variety of ways. You won’t need a long time to read the book, as it is written in a direct, personable way that gets right to the heart of the issue. Beyond its prose style, readers will also appreciate the short length of the book, which clocks in at just over 100 pages. This means that even if you find yourself prone to procrastination or every distraction that comes your way, you’ll be able to get the information you need from this book and face your existential threats head on.