Wasted the quarantine and now have an existential crisis. What should I do now?
Some background. Final Year engineering student who graduated online with the lockdown in place. Liked studying about tech- did a couple of certifications in the past years, made a few projects, did 2 in-office internships in 2 separate startups(spent my dear summer vacations), even published 2 research papers, and got placed on-campus.
But now with being done with the college, and having a job in hand, I don’t wish to go for it. Or for anything that follows in that route.
Reason being? The time this quarantine gave me at home with my family, eating simple food and exploring various other things that exist on this planet along with the issues that plague us all, from the fast rate of extinction of wildlife in the sea and the forest to the racial tensions and economic inequality adding up to people becoming more polarised across the globe, from the USA to Brazil to Hungary to India, made me realize that even if we finally get that great “job” we were aspiring for so long, even if we are set on a career track in an industry that would remain unaffected or loosely affected by economic downturns in the coming few decades(if there is one), the fact that human society and with it, the planet is falling apart would remain unchanged. So what good would it be to become “successful” by the standards that are losing their meaning in this drastically changing world?
I know, for most getting a job and paying bills, etc. is needed at the moment, and that’s fine, but the fact that anything you do for your own comfort after your basic needs are met, as per the old and mostly outdated “norms” of society would only add to the meaninglessness of your lifestyle and ultimately, your existence.
What I’m saying is that we are extremely rapidly transitioning from the industrial economy, into the information economy, and most people are not well equipped mentally for this transition, hence those who are fortunate enough to have their basic needs met and have a functioning mind and body should try adding to the society in a way that reduces the misery that has gripped our common folk’s mind, the misery being the inability to understand and accept the fact that the rate of change hereon would be faster only, and everything, from what work on for a living to how you are able to interact with your neighbours, everything on the societal level and the personal level will subtly change. The feeling of insecurity and the inability to accept this and show the will and humbleness to learn and re-learn is a key factor here. Chaos is expected, but the solution has to be pursued.
Have food to eat, a safe place to live in and know to code? Teach it to someone. Have some money to spare? get a Wifi to some underprivileged children who can then learn something from it. Time spent on stressing hard for your entire life to get into a job that pays 4000$ extra so that you can buy some stuff that you don’t actually need, can be used to be a proud and good addition to the change human society is witnessing.
These thoughts and thus the mental struggle with what to make the central philosophy of life- whether “doing something that’ll do greater good to the world while you’re alive” or “there’s no point, live your life by consuming the most you can, just like old days, and die peacefully” is taking the toll. Since I’ve consumed such information, I’ve started to re-evaluate the definition of success and what it may mean to live a really meaningful life. Just for bread and butter and a BMW, or maybe something else?
Struggle with thyself and find out.
It would be awesome if you could check out Naval Ravikant- the real visionary I’d say. Linking a few videos of his. :) .