The 6 Life-Altering Questions To Ask Yourself If You Struggle With ‘Feeling Behind’ — According To A Mindset Expert

Everyone is living their lives for the first time — give yourself some grace.

Gen Z woman looking pensive and staring out the window. Ground Picture /

Many Gen Zers and millennials find themselves struggling with “milestone anxiety” as they navigate life without achieving what their parents did around the same age. Whether it’s buying a house, having a child, or simply fulfilling goals their childhood selves envisioned, it can be overwhelming and unsettling to move forward in life at a slower pace than expected.

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Content creator and mindset expert Elisenda Domenjó urges people who fear falling behind to ask themselves these specific questions — “They changed the way I view life and might change yours too.”


Here are 6 life-altering questions to ask yourself when you’re feeling behind:

1. How can you be behind on your journey when it’s uniquely yours?

In an ultra-competitive world, where everyone is pitted against each other, it can be far too easy to develop an anxious demeanor whilst navigating daily life. Whether it’s in school, in your job, or just simply existing at home, that societal stereotype is reimagined as a tiny voice in our heads.

“You’re not doing enough. You’re failing. You should be doing something more exciting, more fulfilling, more profitable, more productive,” — It’s thoughts like these that keep us comparing ourselves to others while feeling disappointed in ourselves. There’s always someone bigger, richer, or better than us to compare to, and that’s exactly how our capitalistic and over-indulgent society profits.


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But, as Domenjó put it, "Someone can get married at 22 and divorced by 25. Someone can get married at 40 and last forever. Someone can get a nice paying job at 21. Someone else [can] create something revolutionary, worth a fortune at 35."

"Everyone has their own circumstances, and their journey is unique," she insisted. "Another person's success doesn't take away from your own. It's only a hint that it is possible."


Stop comparing yourself to others and find fulfillment in the things that light you up. Get introspective, put yourself out there, and give yourself some grace. You’re experiencing the world and life for the first time, right alongside everyone else — success and happiness are what you define it to be.

2. What if it all turns out better than you could’ve ever imagined?

American Psychological Association studies on anxiety reveal that a great majority of Americans live with an overwhelming burden of stress about the future. In fact, it’s one of the biggest regrets older generations admit they still grapple with — spending too much time worrying. 

It’s easier said than done, but the more you step away from anxiety about the future, the easier it is to craft the life you want in the present moment. You never know what's going to happen the next day, week, month, year, or even decade. Don’t let the experiences, connections, and beauty of present moments grow dull under the stress of the future.

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3. Would you keep avoiding it if you could not fail?

What are your biggest, wildest, and most unimaginable dreams? Maybe it’s writing a book, traveling abroad, or falling in love. Applying for a new remote job? Going back to college? Moving states? If you’re imagining your own dreams right now, you’re probably already being clouded by insecurity and excuses for why they “just couldn’t” work.

But what if you could achieve any of your dreams, knowing that you wouldn’t fail? Would you cast the self-doubt aside and just go for it?

It’s exactly this mindset and mentality shift that fueled creator Maureen Evelyn to embark on a “rejection” journey at the start of the year.

Instead of allowing a fear of failure or rejection to stop her from trying, she made it a goal to seek it out. From interviewing at her dream job while unqualified to applying at Harvard, Marueen quickly realized her fear of rejection was the only thing standing in the way of her dreams.


If you don’t try now, who’s to say that your dreams wouldn't have come true? Stop avoiding things that you’re afraid you might fail at and instead accept the possibility of it with open arms — you’d be surprised what kinds of doors will open for you.

4. What if all you need is the realization that you’re not the person that you used to be?

Are you constantly comparing yourself to a past version of who you “used to be”? Looking through pictures from years ago, do you find yourself snapped back into a mood of disappointment and resentment, longing for your past self’s body, intellect, or even fulfillment?

Domenjó suggests acknowledging that you today are not the person you were ten years ago, and that's OK. People change and grow, and that knowledge should be empowering rather than discouraging. You’re a culmination of the person you used to be and all the wisdom you have gained along the way.

5. If not now, when? If not you, who?

Give yourself the grace to achieve things on your own timeline and at your own pace. We struggle so much, collectively as a society, through comparison. Nobody else is you — they don’t have the same background, same experience, or same thoughts. Of course, your lives aren’t going to perfectly align.


Take time to get to know who you are, what you love, what lights you up, and what you want from life. Once you have a basic understanding of all of those things, go out and experience life. You hold and exemplify a uniqueness that the world needs, whether you consider it a feat or not.

6. Will you let moments define you? Or will you evolve from them?

Almost 75% of young people categorize themselves as “overthinkers” — often letting a thought, interaction, or memory take charge of their inner monologues. It’s the same kind of worrying and disconnect that many older generations struggle with, thinking about their regrets, younger selves, and all the things they would’ve done differently.

It plagues us all in different ways, but it’s essential to change your mindset. By freeing yourself from regrets, past trauma, and memories, you open up a life for a life of rejuvenation, fulfillment, and happiness. Learn from your past without letting it overtake or overwhelm you.


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Zayda Slabbekoorn is a News & Entertainment Writer at YourTango who focuses on health & wellness, social policy, and human interest stories.