Existential crises: we all have them—some of us
every moment of every day more frequently, others who are kidding themselves into thinking they’re mentally stable less so. They may be triggered by a jarring experience or unexpected event, like you making one small, miniscule, arguably immaterial typo on a government application and having to pay thousands of dollars as a result (ONE LETTER—IT WAS ONE FUCKING LETTER WHY ARE YOU TRYING TO RUIN LIVES), or they may simply occur because existence makes absolutely no sense. Either way, you can survive them, despite seemingly insurmountable odds. Take it from someone well-acquainted with the existential crisis—here’s how to get through it.
Give your life a point
Because it doesn’t really have one, right? We all die eventually and the world will end one day, too (pls see: science). But if you don’t decide to make up some reason for which you’re living, you’ll just devolve into madness. So, yes, we accept the premise that our lives are pointless, but then we choose to move on from that, overlook it, and assign a meaning to things—one that we can believe in enough to make us buy the lie that we’re telling ourselves, that our existence isn’t futile. Whether it’s to be a crusader against corrupt insurance companies (some of us have accepted that this is apparently our destiny), or to create art that brings others relief, or to be the best barista this side of the Mason-Dixon line (but for real does anyone know where that is?), go after something, or multiple things, that you feel will have an impact you would like to make, even if it’s just in the short term.
To the crazy mess that is everything. Literally nothing makes sense. But the less you resent that, the more enjoyable life can be. I’m not saying you have to be thrilled with the everyday drudgery, but maybe, by accepting things the way they are, you’ll open yourself up to experiencing happier things, tiny and insignificant as they may be. Like if you forget for a moment that you have no direction in life, you may be able to genuinely laugh and find humor in something, like someone tripping on the sidewalk, or Donald Trump’s “hair,” or the stupid thing your boss just asked you to do [make sure to laugh uproariously right in their face for this one].
Remember you are most certainly not alone
Everyone is fighting their own battles all day every day, and you’d be surprised at how similar peoples’ struggles are. So take comfort in the fact that life is shit for everyone, not just you! We are miserable and we do love company.
You’ll realize that many brilliant minds have tackled the issues you’re facing (which is all just a way of saying you’re brilliant, of course—your apathetic disillusionment is a revolt against the hollow delusions of society at large and totally enhanced by your wardrobe of exclusively mismatched thrift shop clothing). Read some Kierkegaard, for fuck’s sake.
Preferably on the floor, as usual. Also preferably over the phone to someone—because for all their idiocy, people can sometimes be helpful/comforting. But def do not cry to someone in person because then they’d see your ugly cryface (is there any other kind?). Cry. it. out. And then pick up the pieces and move on. To your next existential crisis. Because they never end. #settlein
Remind yourself it could always be worse
Whatever spurs your existential crisis, try to remember all the things that could be worse. Even if yours is pretty bad, there’s always further down to go. At least in the
white first world. Like, I get it, but Flint; homelessness; no access to healthcare; no access to education; deportation; oppression; war. Look at it like you’re fortunate enough to even be able to have an existential crisis. People with real problems don’t have time for that shit. #tbh #don’tgetyourpantiesinatwistoverthefirstworldcomment #Iknowafewwhitepeoplehaverealproblemstoo
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