Monday, March 23, 2009

1/3rd life crisis

Weird title huh? 1/3rd life crisis. We've heard about the mid-life crisis. It typically involves the mid 40's to mid 50's person who is freaking out because their life is seamingly flashing before their eyes. They sell the Camry and buy a cherry red Miata. They even end up at bars, at times, in "hip" clothing looking to "hang".

We've even heard about the quarter life crisis. It's the 25 year old who has left college and the glow of the neon sign from The Bar is behind you and 40 years in the workforce slaps you in the face. The carefree days of little sleep and big fun are gone and the reality of responsibility arrive.

But these days, I'm feeling the 1/3rd life crisis. You see, I'm 32 years old. I'm not talking about the crisis in terms of my personal life (honey, don't worry I'm not about to buy a shiny red convertible). It's about my professional life. In my thirties, I'm sort of in between. Don't get me wrong, I understand I'm younger than older but that line is blurring.

About two months ago, I began reading about all these new social websites people were using. I had heard about it for some time but just started reading more about it. I sat down with one of our web producers and demanded to learn about it. Not because I was so interested but I felt it was necessary to survive. My life was just fine without twitter and facebook, so I thought. Well, apparently I was wrong and needed to say why in 140 characters or less. Today, I proudly tweet and have my own facebook "fan" page.

While I'm using it, I still feel like your friend's dad whose trying to use words like "cool" and "awesome" with you. Want to know why I feel out of touch with the teens and 20's? I just used cool and awesome as examples!

I'm not in with the older crowd either. They have enough experience that they are running the businesses and don't need to know this new technology (even though they should).

I'm in a technological sandwich trying find my purpose. I feel like I don't have a place and am trying to find that place. The good news is, I hope, that even the 1/4 lifers and mid lifers feel the same way.

This technology is moving so fast we are all trying to find our way. The internet is so vast and so clogged, at the same time, it's hard to feel relevant. Heck, I never heard of 1/3rd life crisis before I started writing about it, but lord knows if I google it, it will come up on some other blog or book. (I just googled it and sure enough it shows up on several web pages!). I may read it but who knows if it's worth the time.

And that is the biggest point. How do we do enough to provide value to be relevant in this new technological world confronting us everywhere we turn, type, or click. That's why media companies are literally dying. Adapting quickly is probably the biggest necessity. Which is why I forced myself to sit down with a near quarter lifer to help out this 1/3rd lifer. He wanted to help and work with me but will other "youngsters".

I feel like I'm starting to babble now so I'm going to stop, but I wanted to more or less get the conversation going. Let me know what you think and where you think you fit.

I need to go for now, I need to catch up with some tweeple.


  1. I'm going through this myself! I felt as if I spent the last 10 years of my life - my 20's - going to college and working hard to get ahead and stay there, only to find out that I'm behind and I don't even know which area I want to be in anymore.

    I just want to make a difference in this world; but apparently I'm not on this world's friend's list.

  2. I am a 34yr Canadian male and I am going though that. I feel like I graduated high school and spent the last 15 years of my life getting nowhere. I have a college education and have never been employed in my field of education. I have no life savings and seem to live through crisis after crisis.

    I still don't know what I want to do as a career; if there is such a thing anymore. I am burdened by my debit from my education, and my only financial dream is that one day I can break even and have $0.

    All I ever wanted in life is to be married and have children. I am almost at the point where I would feel too old to have kids.

    I see a world where greed is king and kindness is repaid with poverty and pain.

  3. I am feeling the same as you are and I am in my late 50s. I have had success in life a few times but the recession has taken a bite at things. I enjoy social networking but find jobs to be rather sterile these days with job descriptions so packaged. I enjoy other aspects of life these days which ultimately seem more important than making the dollar. Consulting seems to allow some type of creativity to step out of the packaged environment. I think it was in my 40s that I let myself semi-retire so dont fall into that trap. However, life has been wonderful overall and I still look forward to it.