The generation entering adulthood now faces novel, sometimes debilitating, challenges. Experts offer tools to navigate anxiety during a ‘quarter–life crisis.’
According to a recent study, 72% of young adults report suffering from a ‘quarter–life crisis‘, and 32% say they are experiencing one.
So, what is a quarter–life crisis? Anxiety UK Operation’s Director Dave Smithson comments: “Often, the 20s and early 30s are considered the best time of a person’s life. Individuals in this age range are generally in good health, have minimal responsibilities and can explore opportunities and take chances in both their professional and private lives.”
“However, it is becoming increasingly clear that young adults are not free of the stresses that come later in life. Many people in this stage of life experience periods of uncertainty and extreme anxiety during which they question their goals, plans and even relationships. Professionals have named this occurrence the ‘quarter–life crisis.”
New research reveals the number of young adults in the UK using potentially addictive drugs to combat anxiety is soaring. A study from the University of Bristol has found significant increases in prescribing of most anti-anxiety medications in recent years, which have been substantial in 18–35-year-olds and women who are twice as likely as men to be diagnosed with anxiety and prescribed medication.
The new study also found 44% of prescriptions for an anti-anxiety medication known as benzodiazepine were consumed for more than four weeks, longer than the recommended maximum. Benzodiazepines are a habit-forming drug, leaving young adults at a huge risk of becoming addicted.
Commenting on the rise of anti-anxiety medication, GP and Media Medic Dr Sarah Jarvis: “Over the last few years, some of our lives have become more anxious and stressful, with young adults among the most affected. We’ve braved a global pandemic only to face war in Europe, a challenging economic situation, and the ongoing strains of 21st-century living.”
“When dealing with anxiety, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution. Everyone’s mental health journey is different, so different techniques will work better for different people. Medication is often seen as a quick fix. Still, many prescribed anti-anxiety medicines carry significant risks and don’t offer a long-term solution to dealing with negative thoughts or emotions.”
“In many cases, the risks of this type of medication outweigh the benefits. In my practice, we welcome a range of treatment and support options, including pharmaceutical grade lavender oil capsules and other non-prescription options such as therapy mindfulness and exercise.”
She shares her tips and tools to navigate anxiety during a quarter-life crisis. Dr Sarah Jarvis comments: “Unfortunately, many young people will experience uncertainty and anxiety as they become more independent and take on new responsibilities.”
“Transitions can be overwhelming. While there’s no easy solution to figuring out your career, relationships or overall life purpose, there are ways to handle the intense emotions surrounding this period. Remember that these feelings are normal, and talk to your friends or family about your experiences. In addition to lifestyle changes and self-care, incorporating a traditional herbal remedy can bring some balance into your daily life and help you to manage anxious thoughts and feelings.”
Seek out solidarity
Start talking to your friends about it if you’re feeling stuck and unhappy. You may be surprised how many of them are experiencing similar feelings or have in the past.
It’s good to talk
The NHS Every Mind Matters website offers many practical tips on improving your well-being. In addition, you can access NHS talking therapy by referring yourself – search for ‘NHS talking therapies’ on the NHS website.
Work a side hustle
Try volunteering, starting a blog or maybe taking one of your passions and turning it into something you could benefit from in more ways than simply as a hobby.
Start making fearless decisions
One of the biggest decision-making myths is that there are “right” or “wrong” decisions. There is no “right” or “wrong” – there are always subtle nuances. These are just the decisions you make based on weighing up the pros and cons at the time.
Don’t let your degree define you
Many graduates feel pressure to remain in the same industry. But you don’t need qualifications to explore other career paths, and this mindset may hold you back.
Try incorporating a herbal remedy
Such as, Kalms Lavender oil has a long-standing association with relieving symptoms of mild anxiety. Benefits are comparable to commonly used anti-anxiety medications without problems such as sedation, addiction, or interaction with other medications.
Remind yourself it’s normal
You’re going through a transient and totally valuable stage of your life. Imposter syndrome is real, but realising you’re not alone in your struggles can hugely benefit your viewpoint.
More than 15 clinical trials suggest that uniquely prepared, pharmaceutical-quality lavender oil – taken in a one-a-day capsule – can significantly reduce both physical and psychological symptoms of anxiety.
The anxiety-relieving effects of uniquely prepared, pharmaceutical-quality lavender oil are available only in Kalms Lavender One-A-Day Capsules. RRP £8.20.