The 26 Year Itch

Interestingly, I feel that around 26 is the age at which you truly wake up to the notion that you must consider what you want to achieve out of life. The forged path of school > university > gap yah > first job has run its course and you are now out in the cold to fend for yourself. For me at least, it seems the age at which life’s pressures and expectations have started to creep into my mind. I would argue that said pressures / expectations largely revolve around the following:

  • Your career path + progression; are you in the right role? If you aren’t, why are you wasting your time? If you are, how quickly can you become CEO?
  • Your relationship status; if you are in a relationship, where is it going? If you aren’t, why aren’t you?
  • Geography; do you want to be settled in one area, or do you want to experience living abroad before the real commitments come into play and it may not be an option?

Although it is not a race, I think we would be lying to ourselves if we didn’t admit that sometimes, it feels like one.

The relationship topic it seems, is of particular interest to every far-removed and ancient family member, with whom you have no true relationship. Despite this, they can’t help but grill you with: ‘so have you got a boyfriend?’

aceyvYou say no, you instantly sound like a lonely shelved loser bound to a life of spinsterhood. You say yes, and you’re fired with a string of invasive + uncomfortable questions regarding the future of said relationship, which, if you don’t have the answer (eg. marriage date & mutually agreed name of your first born son), leaves you feeling hollow inside & walking away wondering if your significant other really does give two shits about you. IT’S LOSE LOSE.


Despite my sisters suggestion that we answer back with ‘well Auntie Moira, I’m just really more of a casual shagger than a relationship gal’ – I don’t think even I have the front to execute this plan straight-faced to a 60+ year old woman. Mother would also not be pleased.

So why is it that in our late 20’s we feel this overwhelming pressure to have achieved / be on the way to achieving, our life goals?

It seems the age bracket at which we are all but on the brink of truly shaping the rest of our lives; whether that be building the foundations of our career paths, getting married or moving abroad. I think we wake up to the fact that there’s no more hand-holding and if you’ve stumbled / fallen face first into the wrong career post-university.. now is the time to change it, because otherwise, you’ll fall behind. Similarly, if you have always wanted to do something such as live abroad, go and do it. Because if you don’t do it now, it may be far more difficult a feat later.

Whilst it feels like a lot of pressure.. and it feels like crunch time.. maybe it only feels that way because you know subconsciously that in some area of your life, you aren’t fulfilling your full potential.

Having said that, I have come to a new found way of thought lately to be grateful and appreciative of what I have; worry less and enjoy the moment more. If you make the most of every opportunity + put out positive vibes, then I am confident that the rest will come.. & at the exact time it is supposed to. Shelf or no shelf. 💁🏼

Law of Attraction: If you focus on negative doom and gloom you will remain under that cloud. If you focus on positive thoughts, and have goals that you aim to achieve you will find a way to achieve them with massive action.

One thought on “The 26 Year Itch

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  1. I love this post, especially what you should tell aunt Moira lol (you should most definitely do that 😉). As a forty something and way past saviour I highly recommend living your life doing what makes you happy. Careers aren’t everything. Travel the world doing the things you love (you never know you might meet Mr Right visiting at an elephant sanctuary in Thailand or building a school in Africa! Follow your heart, be brave and live your joy 😀

    Liked by 1 person

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