Podcast: Leaving uni triggered my quarter-life crisis

After our Dr Oliver Robinson guest post kindly elaborated on how sudden life changes can cause a QLC, we thought we’d get a firsthand perspective from someone who had recently left uni and dived into the workplace…


Top 5 Quarter-life Crisis sites

So you thought getting over your quarter-life crisis would be like ABC, easy as 123, as simple as do re mi?

Well unfortunately, you were wrong (again). Everybody’s different, which is why the good folks at Clueless have compiled the internet’s top 5 QLC sites (it’s actually only #2 to #6 – you already found #1), each focusing on different problems, tastes, and personalities.  Take a wander and see which one suits you best…


Courtesy of Kirk Akahoshi

1 – Kirk Akahoshi, life coach, quarter-life crisis expert

Kirk Akahoshi is the Mr Miyagi of life coaches. His approach to the QLC is very much ‘wax on, wax off’ – that is, getting in touch with your spiritual side before kicking your QLC in the crotch. His blog is all about pinpointing what’s wrong in your life, then making peace with it. It also features a ton of personal challenges which will help shape the way you handle things like finances and relationships – for example making a promise to yourself, like working out an extra couple of days a week, and then donating money to charity every time you break the rules. Bow to your Sensei.


Courtesy of Rebecca Fraser-Thill

2 – Working Self, creating meaningful work with Rebecca Fraser-Thill

Working Self is for QLCers worried about their career(less) life. Rebecca Fraser-Thill describes herself as a “free spirit who regularly turns down ‘prime’ opportunities in pursuit of work that fits my values, goals, and purpose”. As you can see, this blog is less about how to land fat dollar, and more about how to get happiness and meaning out of your work – as well as building your confidence along the way. Rebecca also likes data, as you’ll find in her blog, and is constantly drawing up stats and graphs providing tips like ‘why people who have mentors tend to get salary increases and promotions faster than workers who don’t have mentors’.


3 – My Name is Elizabeth, stories about identity, family, and culture

Deeply personal and spanning everything from growing up to religion, My Name is Elizabeth takes a serious look at some of our most private worries and inhibitions. Combining her cultural experiences with a fair bit of academic study (a PhD in clinical psychology. And a master’s in psychology. Oh, and another master’s in theology.) Elizabeth provides an incisive look into what makes you tick. You’ll be challenged by some of her writing, but probably reassured too. Definitely worth a look for those millenials feeling a bit emo.


Courtesy of Molly Mahar

4 – Stratejoy, You Want to Love Your Life

One for the ladies. Molly Mahar’s Stratejoy is a great place to figure out the coaching, courses, and community you need to get involved with to sidestep your QLC. With hundreds of contributions from women all over the world Stratejoy looks at QLC problems unique to women, whether it’s fighting your corner in a male-dominated workplace or even preparing to have a child. In the community section feel free to post your own questions – you’ll receive a dozen answers from women who’ve been there and done that.

5 – Elite Daily, The Voice of Generation-Y

Ah, the hipsters choice. Teeming with buzzfeed-style articles for quick relief from Microsoft Excel, Elite Daily is a playground for QLCers. Alongside the life, money, and dating pages you’d expect from a QLC site, it also has plenty on sports, music, and humour, among others. Particularly interesting are the travel posts, so those of you looking to “get away from it all” can follow a path well-trodden by QLCers past and present.  It might not be an in-depth look into “where-you-went-wrong-and how-to-set-it-right”, but it provides light relief and laughs, and who can argue with that?

Liveblog: Mind The Gap launch party – what you missed

Happen to miss out on last night’s Mind The Gap launch party liveblog, or wondering how Mind The Gap can help you get through your quarter-life crisis? Catch up here with Clueless’s breakdown to your soon-to-be favourite life coaches…

At a glance:

  • New lifecoaching organisation, Mind The Gap, launches
  • MTG aims to solve the problems of todays 20 and 30-somethings, like the QLC
  • Renowned life coach and psychologist Dr Oliver Robinson talks about the reasons for the rise in QLC-ers
  • “MTG is a genuine niche for QLC support and discussion”, says Doc Robinson
  • mtgcoaching.co.uk/

8.34pm: The chief culprits…

Courtesy of Mind The Gap

8.24pm: But after getting together with her friend Emily, they turned their hobby and passion – bringing music to life – into a business…


8.06pm: Check out the Mind The Gap team here

7.55pm: Really great speech by Dr Robinson. If you want to check out his research, start here. It’s all very sciency.


Courtesy of Oliver Robinson

7.38pm: The unveiling of the MTG logo! MTG coach Alice Stapleton (who we interviewed here) says the logo “reflects the gaps we all stumble into in life – whether in relationships, careers, or finances – and is a warning for this generation. We’re here to guide you round them.”

mind the gap

Is life harder now than it was for other generations?

A big theory on why so many of us are going through a Quarter Life Crisis is because of the tough financial times of the modern era.

Over the last 16 years the average household income has increase 11.7% (from £20,169 to £22,524), whilst the Consumer Price Index (CPI – a figure which measures the relative price of consumer goods and services purchased by normal households) has increased 58.9% over the same period of time. This shows the way in which the average standard of living has fallen significantly over the last 16 years, and could possibly be a major reason why so many of us are struggling to cope with the trials and tribulations of modern day life.

All figures have been taken from the ONS.

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Year Average Annual   Earnings CPI
1996 £20,169 68.307
1997 £20,393 70.45
1998 £20,720 72.865
1999 £21,389 73.988
2000 £21,719 76.176
2001 £22,448 77.526
2002 £22,778 78.818
2003 £22,843 81.098
2004 £23,147 83.513
2005 £23,541 85.871
2006 £23,883 88.615
2007 £24,041 92.414
2008 £24,683 96.082
2009 £24,036 95.589
2010 £23,504 100
2011 £22,970 105.207
2012 £22,524 108.56

What is a quarter-life crisis? An interview with life coach Alice Stapleton (part 1)

courtesy of alicestapleton.acom

Alice Stapleton, life/ career coach and QLC expert,
image courtesy of http://www.alicestapleton.com

Probation officer turned career coach, Alice Stapleton, has researched her way into being an expert on the QLC (not least because she had one herself).  Now she helps people clamber out of the hole of confusion some of generation Y has fallen into. So we went to talk to her, secretly hoping we might get a chance to talk about our very own QLCs  while, of course, sourcing material for this blog. You can find part 2 here.

First up, please reassure us that the QLC is actually ‘a thing’. Because a tiny part of our brain is telling us we’re being silly.

It’s funny, I look through Twitter to see what people are saying about QLCs and American bloggers are going, “Ahh I’m having a QLC” but the ones in England, in typical British fashion, say:  “Is the QLC an actual thing? Because I definitely think I’m experiencing it…”

And I’m like, “Yes, definitely!”

QLCs have been on the table for a few years but it’s been met with a lot of,  “ugh, its the young people moaning again.  What’s their problem? They’ve got it all”.

So what is this phenomenon people call the QLC? 

It’s a kind of identity crisis. You’re in your 20s or early 30s, asking the questions, ‘Who am I? What am I doing? Is this it? Is this what my life’s going to be like forever?”

Why are some of us asking such scary questions so young?

The working world is so competitive  that generation Y is being educated up to its eyeballs. So you finish education later than previous generations did.

The post- war generation baby boomers had a different job market, a better economy and a less competitive world.

But you’re not doing any of the things your parents were doing by your age, and you’re left thinking, “oh my god. I rent, I live with two strangers, I do a job I hate,  and I’m single. What am I doing?”

Being in your 20s used to mean being independent, but that’s hard when you’re financially reliant on your parents, and you have to move back home while you’re struggling to find a job.  There’s more choice career-wise, but it’s hard to take advantage of it all.

Is social media messing with our QLC-ridden minds?  

Facebook and Twitter make things worse because it encourages comparison. Some of your friends will have boyfriends, kids, a house, a great job or whatever you feel you don’t have.

You’re bombarded with updates about all of that, and start thinking there must be something wrong with you.

But  people don’t often update with bad or average news. It’s the great stuff we get on our feeds, so it’s not even an accurate portrayal of someone’s life.

Is the QLC a female thing?

I coach more women than men, but  I don’t think this is because fewer men are struggling, but because  women are happier to talk about it. The issues are the same, the male QLC is just under-reported.

Go on then, tell us about your QLC…

Well, lots of people ask me why I’ve gone into this niche. I always knew I wanted to work one-on-one with people. But also,  I identified with this area of life coaching after I had my QLC.

I was in a state when I left university. I sat at the computer basically crying for three months thinking “ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh!”

Having experienced that relatively mild QLC and seeing some of my friends have a worse time, I thought, god there are people who this is really serious for.

I love my job and I really think there needs to be more support for people struggling with this period of their lives.

Thank you to Alice for chatting to us– great to have an expert debunk some QLC myths. Read part 2 of the interview here.

If you want more QLC wisdom, have a look at Alice’s new project, Mind The Gap . It’s  a community (online and real-world) for people in their 20s and early 30s who would like some support in their post-uni/ adult life confusion.  The coaches are almost all quarter-lifers themselves, so they’ll get what you’re talking about.

Courtesy of Mind The Gap

Courtesy of Mind The Gap