What Should I Do? Ugh!!!

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    I made a post earlier about experiencing a quarter life crisis. But now I’m fed up! Ok. I’m 24 I’ve graduated from college. I have a lousy job at Ross, THAT I ABSOLUTELY HATE. But I am working on getting my teaching certification. I ultimately want to teach English abroad. But still living in my hometown (with my parents) is just making me angry. I hate living here, but I can’t start a new teaching job until this August, so I’m stuck here for a while. I just now feel like EVERYONE is trying to tell me how to live my life. I mean people treat me like damn near every decision I make is wrong. And it’s gotten so bad to where I don’t even try to make decisions out of fear that I’ll make the wrong one. And I mean decisions from where I should move to teach to how I should style my hair!! All of the people I went to school with have moved away, so other than my coworkers, I don’t really have anyone to hang out with near my age. It’s so frustrating. I’m ready to move out and be fully independent, but I don’t have enough money saved up yet and my patience is wearing thin. And now I just feel like a failure. I feel like I little kid who can’t do anything for herself. I don’t feel like a young adult. Sorry for the rant and sorry that it’s so long.


    Hi Jerris,

    All our early life we were put in a “system”, in “a track”, but once school ends it’s every man for himself. Even our old mentors are now competitors or strangers. I wish there was a Program for Life that we can take. But the truth is we’re all just winging it. There is no right or wrong thing or path to do. And that scares me! I would say practice Radical Acceptance for now.



    I feel the same as you..I’m 33 and feel like a child who can’t do anything for herself. A child that is locked up in a woman’s body. I have no advice but I feel for you and sending hugs.


    Thank you for the replies. It’s just so hard to accept that this is the way my life now. And I think that’s because I never thought that my life would be like this now. But life never turns out the way we want. If it did I’d be living in a beach house off the coast of Bali. I just feel like I can’t do anything for myself. And fear keeps rearing its evil head. I say “I want to move out of my parents house” “I want to teach abroad”, and I get a sudden surge of confidence, but then fear of judgment keeps coming up. I never felt like this that much in college. But I somehow feel that everyone is better than me. And it’s so bad that I don’t even want to attempt at anything that I really want to do because I fear that I might fail. And I also fear that if I fail people will talk.


    lifetake2 maybe one day you might like talk about your experiences here? Best wishes and hugs


    Hi Jerris,
    I knew perhaps a similar frustration? when I moved back home for a little while after Uni … it also sounds like atm you are financially stuck there? and if it’s not a good option to get a part time job to afford to rent a room while you finish getting your teaching certificate maybe you could focus on the thought that your course finishes in August..time will pass and those 7 months will soon be here. Keep focusing on making those lists and plans, what countries would you like to teach English?, which ones would offer more opportunities for you? etc research and plan:) This will give you something to look fore ward too and aim for. Try to be kind to yourself in the mean time, do thing that you enjoy, take yourself for nice walks or whatever you can do for relaxation when you’ve time.

    People can be controlling or make unwelcomed suggestions..I’m not sure which is your situation? If it’s unwelcome suggestions? but you are living in a friendly an open environment perhaps use it as a learning opportunely for both you and your family/parents to communicate in a calm way your wishes and dreams and reassure them you’re putting in a lot of time and effort into your plans for the future. Sometimes parents may overdo it because they care, reassure them you are 24 years old capable and strong enough to handle what life throws at you. When they see that you’re happy overseas and have employment hopefully they will calm:)

    On the other hand if they are overly controlling? perhaps ‘thank’ them for that suggestion etc .. consider within yourself quietly if you ‘agree’ or ‘disagree’ and let the words of the person just slide away..focus on the thought that maybe they do this with kindness in their heart for you but it is being expressed in an awkward way and the suggestion wasn’t wanted in the first place, as it’s ultimately your life and your decisions.

    I wonder if you contribute financially to your household for room and board? or at least work it off with house/yard work? If not ? maybe you could also bring this up and discus… it might help with feeling a little more independent while finishing off your studies?

    Jerris if traveling and teaching English is what you really would like to do that is your decision. No one is better or worst than you, and you know your heart and your wishes the best. People can plan and aim for things in life but nobody knows what will happen in the future we can only do the best we are able at that period. Fear is a “feeling” only, it’s there to remind us to ‘watch out’ or ‘be careful’ but if you want to do something (which is not going to harm you or others) and have prepared as best as you can than, accept that you have this feeling, remind yourself that it is not a ‘saber toothed tiger you are hunting, your life is in no danger but thank you very much there fear ‘ you want to travel and teach abroad and push through on your path.

    and People talk… people talk if you fail, people talk if you succeed may the gods bless them… 🙂 Both failing and succeeding make up a happy and content life, when you learn and grow from it.

    Best wishes

    Best wishes 🙂

    Maggie Black

    Begin doing things daily that are important to you whether they make any sense or not.
    Are you working out daily? If not, start.
    Are you doing creative projects with your free time?

    Begin to make yourself into who you want to be and someone you are proud of. Others will see your confidence and treat you accordingly.
    When others see a weakness in you, they will offer all of this unwanted advice that you are suffering though.

    So do not let yourself appear weak. Fake it till you make it if you have too.

    NO, this isn’t not being true to yourself because you are working towards your truth.

    The person you are now is getting the advice for a reason. Somehow people are getting vibes that you need advice!
    Don’t put those vibes out there.
    Be strong, confident, assured and look them in the eye when they say something and let them know you have it ‘under control”.

    You are only 24. Give yourself a break while you are at it. But do start conditioning yourself.
    Read something inspirational every day. Find what you truly love.

    I wish you well!!


    I once felt this way. Exactly, I picked a school, started on my GRE’s and did them every day, every minute, completely obsessively. It worked. At this time, if you don’t have children and you want to go abroad to teach. Focus, make it happen, study, apply, get your certificate. It’s okay to be in your head. It’s okay to be just for you. Learn to skate, study, go fishin, what ever floats your boat, just manifest your energy to where you want to be. Good Luck.


    It’s not that people are giving me unnecessary advice. It’s that when I say that I want to do something, people will say something like “maybe you should do this” or “maybe you’ll be happier doing this”. People act like I can’t make my own decisions. And the idea of teaching abroad is kind of looked down upon where I’m from. People would think that I’m trying to avoid responsibility or something like that. My parents want me to hurry and find a full time job so I can get health insurance, pay my own car insurance, etc. And I’m not trying to avoid being an adult. I think it may be a bit of wanderlust on my part. I’ve lived in this town for 24 years. I went to college here too. I’m working on getting my teaching certificate and that is stressful too. But I have thought about it, and I do think I need to get out of here and be by myself for a while so I can make my own decisions. But I have another question: How do you overcome fear of judgment?


    Be careful what you ask the universe for. The most efficient way to extinguish any response is to use it nonstop. So the most efficient way to overcome the fear of judgement would be to be ridiculed etc till it stopped hurting. It might be the only way though. When I was a little older than you, I had a child instead of finishing my PhD. My family didn’t want me to come home with her, as they are very traditional. When she was born she was deathly ill for 7 days. I stayed awake the whole time so I know. After that I had no false humility anymore. I was stripped bare. It’s not pleasant. But, maybe someone knows an easier way, I hope. I suspect though you might just have to risk it, and get judged, and see if what you want is important enough to reach for anyway.

    I also suspect if you calmly and serenely, dare I say, adultly reach for your goals you might earn some respect. If not they are not worth your time. Where do you want to teach?


    It’s just that I seem to be ALWAYS worrying about what others are thinking, including strangers and I don’t know why. I was actually thinking of teaching in either South Korea, Japan, or Thailand. But the problem is that in the TEFL market, being a single, young, white, female is held in high regard. But I am a single, young, black female and THAT is discouraging me from going through with this. It’s not necessarily impossible, but it’ll take a lot of work.

    Robert Singh

    I’d like to share a short story with you , it may not help – as all issues in life are relative but I hope you will get something from it.

    I had traveled the world , come from a fairly affluent family had many friends etc but eventually I squandered a lot of great opportunities and my addictions led me to run straight into many failures. These failures sort of “culminated” in my getting arrested for possession of prescription pills in Atlanta and spending six months in Fulton County Jail , not even calling any family and not really having anyone actively looking for me.

    Understand that I had great expectations from life andfor a time could sustain this fiction with a thin coating of material success. But here I was . Broke , in an extremely rough prison and without a person in the world who I felt I could call. But you know , in a strange way I felt free for the first time in my life.

    After that I got a job at Michaels (a retail craft store) as a salesperson and went from six figures to $7.50 an hour. I put my soul into that work (even though I could easily have hated it). And thats the key, that’s how we win no matter what by making joy our strength.

    I am not back where I was financially, currently working as an electricians apprentice and at the age of 32 living with my Mom. A complete loser, right? Sure , anyone can categorize me that way and they would be correct , only I don’t feel that way at all. So in my internal world which is the only one that matter I am happier and more successful than I have ever been.

    Why? Instead of “living with my mom” being some horrible mark of shame I see it as a great opportunity to enjoy and improve a relationship with the only family I have , I was, honestly, terribly lonely out in the world with all the trapping of a “good life”. Instead of starting a new, much lower paying and less “prestigous” (its funny too me that I ever had such a simple understanding of life where I thought my job defined me) position feeling like a drop to the bottom, its an exciting new adventure where I get to learn so much about myself and now my new dream is to start my own business selling solar panels and to that end I have saved $50,000 .

    I am not saying that anyone should follow my turbulent trajectory or that you need to fail at anything only illustrating that a change in perspective is a choice and an extremely powerful one. I can say , for sure , that these last years have been the best of my life and I am growing as a person in a way that I never would have in my old life.

    So I approach every day with humility and gratitude. Our stories are different but I would suggest you trick yourself into loving your job and your life while you plan for the future. No time on this earth is less valuable than any other so while you are making these plans for the future, you can get a lot out of what you are doing right now.

    I know how hard it can be and I wish you the strength to hang in there but don’t forget how amazingly exciting the journey ahead of you is going to be and that without a doubt, in your future you will miss certain aspects of what you are experiencing now.

    Best of luck!


    Dear Jerri,

    In India, there is a famous line from a song in Hindi It is ‘kuch to log kahege, logo ka kaam hai kehena’.

    The line means that its people’s job to SAY. No matter what u do, right or wrong, people will say. They will judge you and keep firing unwanted suggestions and advices towards you.
    Amongst such lot, there may be wise people and unwise people/losers.
    If u think that any person advising you is wise and genuinely wants best for u, then listen to him/her and think about it.

    If you think that any person is unnecessarily saying then listen through one ear and throw away from the other. Don’t gv a damn to what he/she is saying.

    Do what u feel is best for you. People will always judge you, even strangers. But don’t think about them. Do what you feel like doing. Do what makes u feel happy and positive. Don’t worry about people.

    And I don’t think that you being black should pose any problem for ur job abroad. You will definitely reach where you deserve to be no matter what.

    Be positive.




    It sounds to me like the people offering alternate ideas for you are probably doing so out of their own fear of having you go off into the unknown where they won’t be able to keep an eye on you. It’s hard for people that love you to not experience anxiety by your doing something adventurous. Because THEY will have to worry (they don’t really have to, they choose to). It would be so much easier on THEM if you just kept to a less exciting plan…… Typical parental behavior. They are not trying to undermine you consciously, but subconsciously I’m sure they are in full gear. It’s like when you send a kid off for their first day of school ever, you worry that the world may not treat your baby the way it should. So the best way to calm their fears (and that’s what it is) is to do your research, present them with exit letters of other people who have gone on this same adventure and are “still alive”. Let them see that this is a reasonable thing for you to do, that you will be well taken care of and that you are doing your research and are not going blindly. And seriously, do that research! That alone will give you more confidence in your decision. Reach out to other people who have gone before you and get some tips and information. The more you prepare, the less vulnerable you will feel to other peoples opinions. And there is never a fail in life. There are experiences. It’s what makes life rich. Adventures are the short cut to self confidence, trust and inner strength. Then you honestly wont care about peoples opinions, seriously.

    I say, look at the job at Ross as a means to an end. A great end. Just keep thinking about all the great things coming your way, keep a smile on your face and you will get through it. And where did you get the opinion on white versus woman of color determining how you are received? Seriously? Who put that junk in your head? It’s time to abandon the self doubt and start getting excited for yourself. Start laughing at people’s last pathetic attempts at keeping you a child. Just keep reassuring them. You’ll be fine.


    Thank you for your reply. I’ve been doing research for about 3 years now, and as far as teaching abroad is concerned, most countries prefer a young, single, white, female teacher for teaching abroad. But it’s not impossible for an African American, it’s just harder. But I’ve also read about several horror stories about teaching English abroad, so that’s kind of deterring me too. And like I said before, I just don’t really like telling people about this dream I have because it’s looked down upon in my family. And I know that I don’t want to spend the next 40 years of my life in an unfulfilling career.

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