7 Existential Crisis Realizations

4 min readApr 27, 2022

During the lowest and darkest moments of my life, I did a massive amount of contemplation and reflection. A few epiphanies have always arisen from the unconscious and concentrated awareness upon what needs to be confronted repeatedly. These realizations have continued to resonate with me until this day, even after years and years of reliving through them again. I do everything to learn from them and integrate them to become more conscientious and understanding of why I am the way I am.

You are not who you think you are:

The space between the perception of self and the embodiment of your character is a lot bigger than you think. As a result, you can undervalue and overvalue certain aspects of yourself. You visualize who you are through a lens of black and white, polarized beliefs. Still, you do not consider the many disregarded dimensionalities of your personality, which are buried underneath the surface-level appearance. Your ego purposefully creates blind spots to maintain its biasness and onewaywardness of viewing life because it does not truly consider the bigger picture of who you are.

Labeling your identity induces more uncertainty than clarity:

When you place names, titles, or states of beings upon your head, then your mind feels obligated to stick to them as closely as possible. When you stray away from a specific label, such as becoming angered uncontrollably, when you consider yourself a calm, peaceful lover, then you are forced to question whether or not that is true. Typically, that’s what you are, but while being betrayed by the one you love, you become the complete opposite — furious, distraught, and confused. Then, you come to realize that labeling yourself as a particular thing all the time doesn’t work — because you are constantly changing, and you may contradict your usual nature of being, which is fine. However, it is less clear afterward who you will be — which is why labeling yourself causes uncertainty and confusion when that identity is conflicted with.

Being delusional is more comfortable than accepting reality:

The real you cannot match the idealistic versions of yourself. It’s impossible to live up to that ideal because perfection is a standard that cannot be achieved when it is farfetched and entirely out of the realm of reality. It’s having too high expectations to appease to the extent that you are miserably living your life through that unrealistic fantasy of who you want to be. However, being delusional and believing you will someday reach the perfect version of yourself is more comfortable than facing the harsh truth that you will never be perfect. That’s why an existential crisis can be so excruciatingly uncomfortable to confront.

Pretending to be someone you’re not is draining and miserable:

It’s a hefty burden to try to experience life through the lens of everyone else and trying to model who you should be after that. It’s exhausting because it requires altering your true nature in accordance with a box of idealistic standards and constantly trying to live up to that. It’s putting on a mask and acting like you are someone, something else, anybody but you, so that you can fit into that ideal. It’s so out of touch with reality that becoming anyone or anything to soothe the unsettling, anxiety-inducing sensation of being different becomes stronger than wanting to be you.

Avoiding your dark side eventually leads to becoming consumed by it:

The shadow side of yourself appears seemingly frightening because you choose to neglect it and assume the uncertain or unknown aspects of yourself will somehow ruin your entire existence because it destroys the perception of who you think you are, which isn’t the case. Shedding light on the dark parts of yourself — animalistic or sexual tendencies, guilty pleasures or embarrassing secrets, aggressive/violent fantasies, nightmares or terrors, will give more power to you and allow you to develop a better understanding of who you are at the core. It requires working through those aspects and sifting through those layers to reveal who you are at the center, in the heart of your soul. Suppressing your true nature amplifies the uprising of distorted, chaotic thoughts and emotions that compel you to push everything deeper down until the skeletons come out of the closet and the shadow exposes itself.

Nothing is more liberating than being honest with yourself:

Once you express the darkest parts of yourself and work through them, alleviation and freedom arrive. No longer do you have to carry the burden or let the weight of the darkness rip apart your identity. Instead, you are fortified and grounded in who you are, regardless of what attempts to distort the image of yourself. Your identity is rooted in truth and authenticity. You no longer have to carry that heavy load of facades to maintain — you can be who you want to be without pretending or painting a mask of how you want the world to see you.

Recreating yourself is a life-long process:

There’s practically no end to what is possible, even if limitations are apparent. You can recreate yourself over and over again for years. You don’t have to be the same person for the rest of your life, and with consistent and steady alterations in your mindset and character, a new self is invented. There’s no stopping or taking breaks when it comes to the inevitable shifts of life. You either morph and shape to the evolution or be forced to bend and break to its ways.