I’m Already 23 And Not Even Close To Where I Want To Be

I’m behind in life, and because of that, I’m a failure.

I have friends graduated with a bachelors degree, and starting their careers. Meanwhile, I’m still picking up part time administrative work, and I feel like crap because of it.

I read a quote the other day that read “The only person you should be comparing yourself to, is you yesterday.”

It sounds like a nice thought, but really, does anyone do that? Maybe those people that seem to be completely emotionally stable with an inner confidence in themselves. You know, the people who just do, and don’t overthink every possible outcome. I wonder what it’s like to be them, because I never have been.

At 18, I was expected to know what I wanted to do with the rest of my life, like every other 18 year old has been expected to know. I just couldn’t handle it. I didn’t even believe that I truly had a purpose. I was lost, but I was supposed to be in college, because I was 18 years old, and that’s what every other 18 year old was doing, so I enrolled.

I was advised to take a year of basic classes to figure out what I wanted to do, so I did. But a year later, I still had no clarity, but I was already in college, and I needed to pick a major, so I picked business administration. I don’t know why. I just did because I needed to pick something.

As you can imagine, that didn’t work out. College is hard, and it’s even harder when what you’re going to school for isn’t even close to what you want to be doing. I maintained a 3.6 GPA, and I worked until I achieved my associates degree, but after that I dropped out, because I just simply didn’t want to be there anymore.

Ever since then, I’ve just been disappointed in myself. I’ve watched my friends achieve their goals, and I’m truly happy for them. They’ve all worked so hard, and they truly deserve it. I just can’t help but compare my own situation to theirs.

I mean we’re both 23…shouldn’t we both be in the exact same spot in life?

No, it doesn’t work that way, because that makes absolutely no sense, and the reason why is simple. Their story isn’t my story. I can wish every day that it was, but it isn’t, because it isn’t supposed to be, and it’s taken me far too long to realize that.

I don’t have to be at certain spot in my life because I’m 23 years old, and I’m not behind in life. I’m exactly where I am supposed to be, because if I was anywhere else, I wouldn’t be me.

The experiences we have and the way we get through life, defines us. It builds us. I was supposed to know what I wanted to do with my life at 18 years old, but I didn’t. I know now though, and as hard as it’s going to be, I’m going back to college to do what I have to do, and achieve my goals.

I owe it to the person I want to be. I won’t get hung up on everyone else around me. I won’t question whether or not it’s worth it, because I know that it will be. I get one life, and wasting time comparing mine, to others, is pointless.

I’m not a failure because I haven’t gotten to where I want to go yet. I would be a failure if I let that stop me.

My story isn’t anyone else’s. It’s mine, and it’s only just beginning.

After all, I’m only 23.

61 thoughts on “I’m Already 23 And Not Even Close To Where I Want To Be

  1. I’m very much aware of this feeling, I’m 25 and I’ve just begun to understand the notion of being a hummingbird. Someone that explores all aspects in life, perhaps with no particular passion. And that’s okay. Thank you so much for posting this, it’s validating and reassuring! 😊

    Liked by 2 people

  2. This post resonates with me so much. I’m 21 and I feel so so so lost I feel the need to call 911 and ask if they can help find me. JK. But I do feel lost, because I feel like every single one of my friends have achieved something I should’ve achieved too but still haven’t. Like what I’ve said in one of my posts, I already had myself but I lost her again in trying to find what I already had. Makes no sense right? But somehow during one of my dark days, that made sense to me. And so I am on my way to start recovering me. I’m only 21, after all. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m so happy you read this and can relate ❤

      Maybe I’m totally crazy, but I think that makes complete sense. I think I relate to it a lot. It’s like I had already found myself, but that wasn’t good enough for me, so I tried to reinvent myself and find something more. But I had it right the first time, so of course I couldn’t find myself again.

      I think it’s important to remind ourselves to just be us, and that’s good enough, because that’s all we can be. Thank you so much for reading ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  3. I’m now 22 and I’m also feeling so lost than ever. Everyone around me is doing something to achieve what they want and here I am, still can’t figure out mine.

    In an environment where everyone is competing with others, it’s hard but sometimes I would remind myself that the only person I’m competing with is my old self.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. You know the feeling when you’re struggling with life and everything you see felt like it’s directed to you? ‘Cause I’m feeling that way right now. And seeing all these comments in your post encourages me to not give up and just keep going. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you!! I’m glad you can relate! I think everyone is like that. People probably look at you the same way you look at others. It’s human nature, but like you said, it’s okay! And it’s important we know that ❤

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  4. I’m in my thirties and if you would have asked me what I wanted to be for the rest of my life when I was 23, it would be something totally different than where I am now. Life is full of surprises. Take time to explore, get to know who you are, what makes you happy, and try new things. Enjoy being 23 and let things happen. This world is a beautiful place, let it guide you😊

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  5. Hey there, could the timing of this post be any better! I am 26, just got the results for an exam that I have been preparing for the past two years and I failed. Wrote a depressing post in my blog and came over here to read this. I have always been a lost soul, hopping from one passion to another, never finding where I fit it. But I am still happy because at least I am trying. There are many people around us, who never even try to get lost, they stay still, life passes by. I don’t want my life to just pass, you know, even if it means failing in a lot more things. I hope you understand what I am trying to say here. I am a bit down, so might not be making a whole lot of sense.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I’m so sorry you’re going through a rough time right now. You absolutely make sense, and are absolutely right though. We all fail. I have failed so many times, but I would take that any day over never trying at all never knowing what you’re capable of. I think our failures make us stronger and wiser. I can tell by your words you know that. I think it’s beautiful how you articulate yourself, and that as young as you still are you know you don’t want life to just pass you by. Keep finding new passions, and continue to nurture your old ones. I think you sound like an amazing person who will find many purposes in life and accomplish many things. ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  6. It’s very common to take some time to establish yourself or find a place you feel comfortable, confidant and at home in a workplace. You are certainly not a failure – you are just starting out, you have nothing at worry about, — I can assure you many people would love trading places with you in the position you are in your life right now. Take this time to define what it is you really want, then map out how it is that in the position you’re in right now, you can get there. If you can’t map that out pick some place between and map it out – then do it, if you fail, try again, because it is not the best, brightest, smartest or hardest working that always gets ahead – sometimes its those who just will not quit, grit. Be determined and be assured you are just where you should be right now, not failing – just begining a new and wonderful full life – Be well superstar – keep you head held high.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. My brother could not find a job out of college, he had a chemical engineering degree, his friends were becoming what ever it is they would become, he was very upset at the time. Now he is sitting on the main board of directors for a 28 billion dollar corporation. I can tell you from my expierience that anything is possible. 🙂 Cheers

    Liked by 1 person

  8. At the end of the day it really doesn’t pay to compare with others. Because everyone is going through their own form of hell. & you cannot do anything about those who are doing better than you. What you have control over is you. And comparing yourself to yesterday and saying I will improve 1% is all that is required of you everyday. I am 27 and really lost in life right now and at the juncture where nothing is workingout with me while my friends are getting married/promoted/having kids/(add anything worth being jealous about) but it doesn’t bother me. Because I know where I am and why I am here. I just need to continue grinding everyday and hope oneday preparation will meet luck and explode in a beautiful painting.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I completely agree. So well said! I think it’s important to realize that I might wish I was in someone else shoes sometimes, but there are probably people who wish they were in mine! I wish you luck in finding yourself. I am sure you will get there ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Exactly. As they say the grass is always greener on the other side. But it is really all about self improvement. And just keep at it. We are never meant to find our one and only true calling. Just keep exploring. Also read James Altucher’s blogs. He is a genuine writer.

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  9. I wouldn’t worry about it too much. As long as you’re doing SOMETHING.

    I’m 25-years-old now, and I’ve tried out all kinds of vocations. I’ve worked on farms, grain elevators, construction, in factories, in bars, restaurants, door-to-door selling, credit card sales, club promoting, waiter, busser, and taught guitar lessons briefly. Shit, I even sold drugs for a bit.

    I’ve done all that and I graduated last year from University with a bachelor’s degree (which is totally useless by the way. I wouldn’t recommend Uni to anyone, other than if you’re enrolled into the STEM field).

    Now I make a living writing and I’m in the process of learning to code (computer programming), just for something new.

    My goal is to have a website or two that makes money, as well as my own nightclub by the time I’m 28-29-years-old.

    Just keep trying new things. I used to think that playing guitar was my passion, but I stopped playing a few years back. For my whole life, I wanted to be a musician. I sunk so many hours into playing, but one day, I just stopped obsessing over it. It felt like I lost a mission or a path in life. I can definitely relate to the idea of not having a passion or a mission. It’s shitty.

    However, you just have to keep doing your thing. The fact that you have a blog with a lot of followers is cool. I’m sure you have other things going on as well.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you so much! That is very inspiring and motivating. I agree it’s extremely important to keep trying knew things and setting goals, and that sometimes people do just change. Wishing you luck in accomplishing your night club and website! You seem like you know exactly what you need to do. Very wise, and because of that, my guess is that you will go far! Thank you again!

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  10. Hey!
    It’s good to hear you are going back to school. The satisfaction for your accomplishments will feel so amazing. I promise you. I am thirty and just barely got my AA for psychology transfer, and I will be starting cal state next month! I went through all the stages you described. I was in and out of college for the past ten years, changing jobs and moving, because I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I hated the 9-5 and always looked for an opportunity to do something on my own. I am happy to say that at my thirty I feel like I have accomplished major milestones and finally coming to peace with myself for taking care of unfinished business. I am proud to say that I recently published my first poetry book.
    Keep doing you, keep doing what you are doing until you figure things out. Don’t let anyone kill your dreams. You are still young and have time and this is just part of the journey of your life. Make the best of it! ❤

    Liked by 3 people

  11. I can totally relate! I was feeling very lost at 23. I was engaged to be married at 23 and what was supposed to be the happiest moments of my life, were not. I had no idea who I was, or what I wanted to do with my life. I didn’t figure it out until very recently. Art and writing are my passions, so, I’m hoping to be a successful blogger someday. I’ll be 26 next month. I have hope for you! Hugs.

    Liked by 3 people

  12. There’s self comparison at every age and stage. Imposter syndrome or “I should be here by a certain age” is real, though not entirely productive or helpful. Nice post!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Hi. I don’t think that you are a failure at all. You write beautifully, you are talented and have the rest of your life ahead of you. Everyone has their own pace and path. I’m sure that you’ll go places. Peace and blessings!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I can really relate to this but I’m 32 and still get the same sense of panic that I’m doing the “wrong thing”, that I’m a “failure”. I think these days many of us do have so many options and are able to see more possibilities that it makes decisions more difficult. I’ve tried several different jobs and still haven’t really found anything that feels right. Sometimes I look back on all my choices with regret but, like you said, without those experiences I wouldn’t be who I am now. Each experience teaches us something about ourselves. I don’t think it’s ever too late to try something new and I’ve met plenty of older people who have found their niche much later on in life, so try not to worry if you’re not there yet. I do at least have a job now that pays the bills and allows me the time to explore my passions, learn in the evenings etc, which will hopefully least me to something more fulfilling eventually. If you’ve got the option and means to try out different things, go for it – learn, discover, enjoy. Life would be boring if we had all the answers straight away.

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    1. Thank you so much, honestly. It really is so true, and I admire people even more who don’t find themselves at an older age, and then accomplish all their goals. You are so right about each experience teaching us something about ourselves. We wouldn’t even be ourselves if it weren’t for our own experiences, good and bad! Thank you again. ❤

      Like

  15. Please read my blog posts. Follow me back. Just do something, i love your writing and i need your feedback or opinion. Never stop writing on the one hand!

    Like

  16. I feel so related to this post. Tomorrow I’ll be 23, I graduated but I have been struggling so hard to find a job, plus at the last year of college I realised that I didn’t like my major, but I had to finish it because my student loan is so big I couldn’t afford a bigger debt if I chose to change majors. Now I’m in a point where I know what I want to do and where I want to work, but no one is willing to give me a chance because my degree is not related. I have the knowledge and all of my work experience is in that field, but people don’t care because the official university paper says I should be working as an engineer and not in social media. I feel so frustrated because I know I am talented and can do so many great things, but I just feel that I get pushed back. Anyways, I’m not giving up, I’ll somehow manage to get what i want. Your writing is beautiful and it’s so nice to see I’m not alone in all of this. I recently started out a blog, and it would be amazing if you could check it out and give this newbie some feedback 🙂

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    1. I’m glad we can relate!! ❤
      I honestly think you are so inspiring. Keep trying, and staying true to who you are. It's awesome the confidence you have in yourself knowing that you can do it! I can even tell just from your comment that you would be great working with social media. You're honestly so well spoken. It only takes one person to believe in you, and I honestly think that it's closer than you think! Also, congratulations on graduating!! That's so awesome ❤

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  17. I don’t think your a failure, I really like your post and I think a lot of young adults like us feel the same way. We just need to find stuff we love to do and do that. It may not be what everyone else is doing, but if you love doing it then who cares?

    Liked by 2 people

  18. I definitely related to this post. I just graduated this past May, and all my friends are working in their career fields already except for me. At first I was pretty sad about where I was, but I’m working on changing my mindset and focusing on doing things that will get me closer to my goals. Graduating was just the first step, there’s so much more to come!

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Thank you for making this post. I think this is something a lot of people relate to. I know I do, especially. I will be 29 years old in a few months, I never went to college, I live with my mother (and have never lived on my own), I work a basically dead-end job, I’m single, and I have no kids. I feel like literally every other person my age is doing better than me. I even see many people who are younger than me who have already achieved more in life than I have. It’s really hard to not compare yourself to others, but like you said, we all have our own paths and life is different for everybody.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for reading! I agree, and I feel the exact same way. It’s especially worse when people who are younger than you seem like they’re more together and more successful. But yes, we do all have our own path, and our own story. Keep doing you, and we’ll all find our own way eventually. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  20. Somewhere along the road you might end up reflecting on your life back then. I encourage you to keep moving on in life. You are still 23 and I didn’t decide until 24 that I wanted to be a teacher. Sooner or later, you will end up with experiences that will change your outlook on life. However, don’t wait for those experiences to happen to you. Go outside and make yourself happy. Try new things, visit new coffee shops, try coffee (I recommend abstaining from Starbucks), meet new people.

    I pray that you will keep living and moving on in life. 23 is not the only age you will be forever.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much! I will so my absolute best to keep the mind set to keep going in life. It’s also very inspiring me that you didn’t know you wanted to be a teacher until you were 24. Thank you for sharing ❤

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  21. Hi. I’m actually 19 years old now and I’m in my last year in college. Even though I wasn’t 23 years old yet and maybe I wouldn’t know the pressure you are feeling, I can honestly relate to your realizations. Until now, the road I’m going to track after graduation is still blurry and I’m still having what if’s and negative thinking. But as I read your blog post, I was motivated to take risk and do what I want, as what you said, you are not a failure, you are going to be if you let it stop you. So all I can say just assess yourself and do the thing you always wanted to do that makes you happy. And keep inspiring people like what you did to me. Fighting! Thank you

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  22. Most people feel like this including me. I have always been an artist and continue to be. I’ve been into filmmaking and photography and music for 25 years. I’ll never stop. I work out of my studio in the basement. It keeps me sane. So, it seems we put the value on money. I’m VERY HAPPY doing what I do in the studio but don’t get paid much at all. no college degree required. Most with art degrees can’t do what I do, so who’s better? I’m happy and that’s all that matters. Sure, I’d love to have a lot of money and a large savings account, but those people are unhappy too. Maybe they’re saying I WISH I HAD A HOBBY.

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    1. I 100% agree!! There are definitely people out there who are in 9-5 job that pays really well but they hate it, and they wish they had a passion. That’s why we really should compare ourselves to anyone. We should just do what makes us happy and that’s all. I’m glad you are happy with what you do in life! That isn’t the case for many people.

      Like

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