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20 Movies For People Who Are Having A Quarter-Life Crisis

20 Movies For People Who Are Having A Quarter-Life Crisis

Do you remember when you were younger and just couldn’t wait to grow up? And now, here you are, a full-fledged adult with a career, commitments, and bills. It’s not quite what you hoped for, right? This whole being an adult thing is just a little overwhelming and not that exciting. In fact, it can be pretty disappointing.

You’re not alone; almost everybody goes through this phase somewhere between their late 20s and early 30s — it’s called the quarter-life crisis. You start to feel trapped by your job or your relationship, and you just want out of it all. It can be a very confusing and painful time in your life.

Below are 20 movies that are truly inspirational that can relieve the pain and even motivate you.

1. Into the Wild

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    “When you want something in life, you just gotta reach out and grab it.”

    This is the true story of a young man going through a quarter-life crisis. He leaves home in search of adventure in the Alaskan wilderness.

    2. The Fault in Our Stars

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      “The world is not a wish-granting factory.”

      This is the heartwarming story of two teenage cancer patients who fall in love. They bond over reading the same book and set out to meet the author.

      3. Whiplash

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        “I’d rather die drunk, broke at 34, and have people at a dinner table talk about me than live to be rich and sober at 90, and nobody remembered who I was.”

        Whiplash is about the struggles of a young, talented drummer who gets into a prestigious music academy. He develops a complex relationship with his aggressive instructor, who tries to push him to greatness.

        4. 500 Days of Summer

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          Trailer

          “People change. Feelings change. It doesn’t mean that the love once shared wasn’t true and real. It simply just means that sometimes, when people grow, they grow apart.”

          500 Days of Summer is a romantic comedy about a girl who doesn’t believe in true love and a guy who has been waiting for true love his whole life. It’s a great reminder that no matter how bad things seem in your life, they can always get better.

          5. About Time

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            “We’re all traveling through time together, every day of our lives. All we can do is do our best to relish this remarkable ride.”

            About Time is about a 21-year-old-man who is going through his own quarter-life crisis. When he discovers that he can travel through time, he decides to improve his love life.

            6. Garden State

              Trailer

              “If you can’t laugh at yourself, life is going to seem a whole lot longer than you’d like…What do you do? You laugh, you know. I’m not saying I don’t cry, but in between, I laugh.”

              Garden State is a great movie to help you with your quarter-life crisis. It revolves around two characters who are transitioning into adulthood, dealing with death, and learning from the past.

              7. The Devil Wears Prada

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                “I love my job. I love my job. I love my job.”

                This movie is great if your quarter-life crisis was brought on by career stress. The Devil Wears Prada is the story of a girl who lands her dream job but has a difficult boss.

                8. Walking and Talking

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                  “I wonder if I’ll ever know what it’s like to not break up with someone.”

                  Walking and Talking is the perfect movie about life changes and how close friends are not always on the same path.

                  9. Almost Famous

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                    “You’ll meet them all again on their long journey to the middle.”

                    Almost Famous is all about taking risks to get what you want. Sixteen-year-old William sets out to become a rock-and-roll journalist. He ends up learning quite a bit about life along the way.

                    10. About Alex

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                      “Judgment has a way of creeping into every relationship — even the most intimate. If we’re lucky, somewhere along the way, we meet a few people who listen to us without criticism or reproach. We call those people our friends.”

                      This movie is about a group of friends who come together for the weekend. They are there to support a friend after his suicide attempt. Coming together brings back a lot of old, unresolved issues.

                      11. Beaches

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                        “What will I do without a best friend?”

                        This movie is about two best friends who support each other through the quarter-life crisis, divorce, illness, and loss.

                        12. Office Space

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                          “So I was sitting in my cubicle today, and I realized, ever since I started working, every single day of my life has been worse than the day before it. So that means that every single day that you see me, that’s on the worst day of my life.”

                          This is another excellent movie about working in a dead-end job with a terrible boss.

                          13. Good Will Hunting

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                            “You’ll have bad times, but it’ll always wake you up to the good stuff you weren’t paying attention to.”

                            Matt Damon plays a math genius working as a janitor at M.I.T. who goes through a quarter-life crisis.

                            14. The Graduate

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                              “It’s like I was playing some kind of game, but the rules don’t make any sense to me. They’re being made up by all the wrong people.”

                              This movie portrays the classic quarter-life crisis. Ben finishes college at the top of his class, but what is he going to do next?

                              15. Reality Bites

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                                “Welcome to the world of the emotionally mature.”

                                Friends graduate from college and have to face adulthood. Their quarter-life crises are all about looking for love and work.

                                16. Amazing Grace

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                                  “…we’re too young to realize certain things are impossible, which is why we will do them anyway.”

                                  Amazing Grace is the story of a young man who fights against the British slave trade. It’s a reminder to anyone going through a quarter-life crisis that sometimes, it can take years of difficult, painful, and depressing work to achieve lifetime goals.

                                  17. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

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                                    “To see the world, things dangerous to come to, to see behind walls, draw closer, to find each other, and to feel. That is the purpose of life.”

                                    In this movie, Ben Stiller plays Walter Mitty, a man who has diligently worked at the same job for years. Unhappy and about to lose his job, he takes off on an international adventure in an attempt to find himself.

                                    18. People Places Things

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                                      “Yeah, I’m fine. I’m just having a bad life. It’ll be over eventually.”

                                      People Places Things is about a newly divorced man and how he tries to get over his ex-wife while balancing his new life, his career, and parenting.

                                      19. Young Adult

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                                        “Sometimes, in order to heal, a few people have to get hurt.”

                                        A newly divorced woman returns to her hometown while she is going through her quarter-life crisis. Things aren’t as she left them, however, and she must learn to deal with the changes.

                                        20. Silver Linings Playbook

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                                          “If clouds are blocking the sun, there will always be a silver lining that reminds me to keep on trying.”

                                          Silver Linings Playbook is about a man who gets divorced, spends time in a mental institution, and moves back in with his parents. He has to learn to navigate his feelings about his ex-wife and a new girl he meets.

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                                          Amber Pariona

                                          EFL Teacher, Lifehack Writer, English/Spanish Translator, MPA

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                                          Last Updated on January 15, 2021

                                          7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

                                          7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

                                          The popular idiomatic saying that “actions speak louder than words” has been around for centuries, but even to this day, most people struggle with at least one area of nonverbal communication. Consequently, many of us aspire to have more confident body language but don’t have the knowledge and tools necessary to change what are largely unconscious behaviors.

                                          Given that others’ perceptions of our competence and confidence are predominantly influenced by what we do with our faces and bodies, it’s important to develop greater self-awareness and consciously practice better posture, stance, eye contact, facial expressions, hand movements, and other aspects of body language.

                                          Posture

                                          First things first: how is your posture? Let’s start with a quick self-assessment of your body.

                                          • Are your shoulders slumped over or rolled back in an upright posture?
                                          • When you stand up, do you evenly distribute your weight or lean excessively to one side?
                                          • Does your natural stance place your feet relatively shoulder-width apart or are your feet and legs close together in a closed-off position?
                                          • When you sit, does your lower back protrude out in a slumped position or maintain a straight, spine-friendly posture in your seat?

                                          All of these are important considerations to make when evaluating and improving your posture and stance, which will lead to more confident body language over time. If you routinely struggle with maintaining good posture, consider buying a posture trainer/corrector, consulting a chiropractor or physical therapist, stretching daily, and strengthening both your core and back muscles.

                                          Facial Expressions

                                          Are you prone to any of the following in personal or professional settings?

                                          • Bruxism (tight, clenched jaw or grinding teeth)
                                          • Frowning and/or furrowing brows
                                          • Avoiding direct eye contact and/or staring at the ground

                                          If you answered “yes” to any of these, then let’s start by examining various ways in which you can project confident body language through your facial expressions.

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                                          1. Understand How Others Perceive Your Facial Expressions

                                          A December 2020 study by UC Berkeley and Google researchers utilized a deep neural network to analyze facial expressions in six million YouTube clips representing people from over 140 countries. The study found that, despite socio-cultural differences, people around the world tended to use about 70% of the same facial expressions in response to different emotional stimuli and situations.[1]

                                          The study’s researchers also published a fascinating interactive map to demonstrate how their machine learning technology assessed various facial expressions and determined subtle differences in emotional responses.

                                          This study highlights the social importance of facial expressions because whether or not we’re consciously aware of them—by gazing into a mirror or your screen on a video conferencing platform—how we present our faces to others can have tremendous impacts on their perceptions of us, our confidence, and our emotional states. This awareness is the essential first step towards

                                          2. Relax Your Face

                                          New research on bruxism and facial tension found the stresses and anxieties of Covid-19 lockdowns led to considerable increases in orofacial pain, jaw-clenching, and teeth grinding, particularly among women.[2]

                                          The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research estimates that more than 10 million Americans alone have temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ syndrome), and facial tension can lead to other complications such as insomnia, wrinkles, dry skin, and dark, puffy bags under your eyes.[3])

                                          To avoid these unpleasant outcomes, start practicing progressive muscle relaxation techniques and taking breaks more frequently throughout the day to moderate facial tension.[4] You should also try out some biofeedback techniques to enhance your awareness of involuntary bodily processes like facial tension and achieve more confident body language as a result.[5]

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                                          3. Improve Your Eye Contact

                                          Did you know there’s an entire subfield of kinesic communication research dedicated to eye movements and behaviors called oculesics?[6] It refers to various communication behaviors including direct eye contact, averting one’s gaze, pupil dilation/constriction, and even frequency of blinking. All of these qualities can shape how other people perceive you, which means that eye contact is yet another area of nonverbal body language that we should be more mindful of in social interactions.

                                          The ideal type (direct/indirect) and duration of eye contact depends on a variety of factors, such as cultural setting, differences in power/authority/age between the parties involved, and communication context. Research has shown that differences in the effects of eye contact are particularly prominent when comparing East Asian and Western European/North American cultures.[7]

                                          To improve your eye contact with others, strive to maintain consistent contact for at least 3 to 4 seconds at a time, consciously consider where you’re looking while listening to someone else, and practice eye contact as much as possible (as strange as this may seem in the beginning, it’s the best way to improve).

                                          3. Smile More

                                          There are many benefits to smiling and laughing, and when it comes to working on more confident body language, this is an area that should be fun, low-stakes, and relatively stress-free.

                                          Smiling is associated with the “happiness chemical” dopamine and the mood-stabilizing hormone, serotonin. Many empirical studies have shown that smiling generally leads to positive outcomes for the person smiling, and further research has shown that smiling can influence listeners’ perceptions of our confidence and trustworthiness as well.

                                          4. Hand Gestures

                                          Similar to facial expressions and posture, what you do with your hands while speaking or listening in a conversation can significantly influence others’ perceptions of you in positive or negative ways.

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                                          It’s undoubtedly challenging to consciously account for all of your nonverbal signals while simultaneously trying to stay engaged with the verbal part of the discussion, but putting in the effort to develop more bodily awareness now will make it much easier to unconsciously project more confident body language later on.

                                          5. Enhance Your Handshake

                                          In the article, “An Anthropology of the Handshake,” University of Copenhagen social anthropology professor Bjarke Oxlund assessed the future of handshaking in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic:[8]

                                          “Handshakes not only vary in function and meaning but do so according to social context, situation and scale. . . a public discussion should ensue on the advantages and disadvantages of holding on to the tradition of shaking hands as the conventional gesture of greeting and leave-taking in a variety of circumstances.”

                                          It’s too early to determine some of the ways in which Covid-19 has permanently changed our social norms and professional etiquette standards, but it’s reasonable to assume that handshaking may retain its importance in American society even after this pandemic. To practice more confident body language in the meantime, the video on the science of the perfect handshake below explains what you need to know.

                                          6. Complement Your Verbals With Hand Gestures

                                          As you know by now, confident communication involves so much more than simply smiling more or sounding like you know what you’re talking about. What you do with your hands can be particularly influential in how others perceive you, whether you’re fidgeting with an object, clenching your fists, hiding your hands in your pockets, or calmly gesturing to emphasize important points you’re discussing.

                                          Social psychology researchers have found that “iconic gestures”—hand movements that appear to be meaningfully related to the speaker’s verbal content—can have profound impacts on listeners’ information retention. In other words, people are more likely to engage with you and remember more of what you said when you speak with complementary hand gestures instead of just your voice.[9]

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                                          Further research on hand gestures has shown that even your choice of the left or right hand for gesturing can influence your ability to clearly convey information to listeners, which supports the notion that more confident body language is readily achievable through greater self-awareness and deliberate nonverbal actions.[10]

                                          Final Takeaways

                                          Developing better posture, enhancing your facial expressiveness, and practicing hand gestures can vastly improve your communication with other people. At first, it will be challenging to consciously practice nonverbal behaviors that many of us are accustomed to performing daily without thinking about them.

                                          If you ever feel discouraged, however, remember that there’s no downside to consistently putting in just a little more time and effort to increase your bodily awareness. With the tips and strategies above, you’ll be well on your way to embracing more confident body language and amplifying others’ perceptions of you in no time.

                                          More Tips on How to Develop a Confident Body Language

                                          Featured photo credit: Maria Lupan via unsplash.com

                                          Reference

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