Growing Up is Exploration; Adulting is About Connecting the Dots

I turned 25 last year. And 25 is a weird age to hit. It brings along a mini existential crisis while those around you are still congratulating you.

The feeling concisely is like “Damn, so now it affirms my position into the actual adult club.”  

Although your credibility as a ‘grownup’ solidifies, the bigger questions about life, the cluelessness, and the uncertainty still cling to you.

Also, the realization is scary as it makes you question what good use has your existence served so far. In most cases, you still haven’t become the next Zuckerberg or have set an example (and that’s okay, too).

Personally, I look at the soft beard on my cheeks and wonder how adult do I feel. I raise my brows when random kids call me uncle.

In all niceness, I acknowledge that it’s one of the phases of transition that we all experience it seems.

But growing up has a shinier side to it

The one thing that really differentiates teenage years from the late 20s is that while you go through a lot of confusion in the former one, you sort of find what you want as you age.

As the years pass, you go from being a clueless person who has no specific likes, principles, or ambitions to somebody who has traces of what they want in their head.

Intuitively, you figure the stuff that works from the life that you’ve lived. You dismantle all that you’ve gone through, take a close look at it, and have a picture in your head about what works and what doesn’t.  

Even without the specifics, you sort of know that you’re capable of steering your life your way. That peace, firmness, and reassurance are comforting.

There’s one thing to be learned from it.

Growing up is exploration and adulting is about connecting the dots

Whatever we explore at every stage of life lays the foundation for what we ultimately decide to settle with.

For instance, you’ll be exposed to a lot during your teenage years. Tons of weird people, parties and hobbies, virtues and blunders, and whatever else you can recall as you’re reading this.

It’s as if you’ve found a time capsule that contains all that you’ve come across in the past 20 years or so – but then you pick and keep only what genuinely pulls your heartstrings.

That’s a good thing, isn’t it?

The past helps you become who you are today.

For instance, the exploration goes on even in our 20s and affects how one feels in 40s and so on. First, we experience and then we study the past to be wiser and improvise.

Gowing up is initially about … wearing weird clothes, having trouble ordering from the menu, wondering whether you like bikes or car rides, mingling naively with people, and not knowing what the heck it is that you’re dealing with.

But soon you can intuitively sense your personality shape up as you go on. You rise above external influences and discover your own voice. So … it becomes easier to connect the dots once you look back.