I have been 23 for almost three months now, and I have quickly learned that it is one of the most confusing ages. For me, 23 just seems like one of those ages where I feel stuck, no longer able to call myself a "recent grad" but still not comfortable calling myself a "young professional", so where does that put me?
College was a time where I felt like everyone was in the same boat, going to classes, working and enjoying the college experience. It was a time where you didn't really have to worry about anything because being a "broke college student" seemed like a reasonable excuse for avoiding most responsibilities.
First year post grad was an incredibly hard transition, but it made it easier knowing most people were struggling with the same problems that I was. Trying to find employment and learning to live on your own while saving up money to be able to do the things you want to do. There were some times where I felt like I was doing everything wrong but still being able to tell people I had JUST graduated college helped them understand the seemingly normal struggles I kept encountering.
Coming up on my second year post grad, I've started to notice those same worries and insecurities creeping back up. Feeling like I'm not doing enough with my incredibly expensive piece of paper that is my diploma, still relying on my parents to help me survive and trying to balance my first real job with still having the social life of a 23 year old seems harder and harder, while I was expecting things to just get easier.
It has always been hard for me not to compare myself to the people I surround myself with, and that has proven to be a bigger problem for me this year than any year before. I am finally in a job that I love, in a city I love and spending time with people I love and yet there is always an underlying feeling that everyone else around me is doing much better than I am. Deep down I know that isn't true because success isn't something that can be compared like that. Success means something different to every single person, but yet the societal norms are pushing me to believe I am not doing well enough for my age.
Still living at home while all my friends live on their own, being single in a world where people my age are getting married, and working 40+ hours a week but still not able to save enough to support myself are just a few of the things that weigh on me every single day.
As I said, I am happy with where I'm at in life (for the most part), but it's still hard not to compare myself to other people. I've only been 23 for a short amount of time, but it has already proven to produce many road bumps. Your 20's in general are a tough time because of all the transitions you go through, so who knows maybe my whole life will change within the next 3 months, and 23 could become the best year of my life. As for now, I just gotta keep pushing through until something good comes along.