Recognise the Apparent Midlife Crisis for What it is: Opportunity for Self-Growth

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Age-net brings to life the real problems that creep up after forty and offers advice on using the time for reflection.

There’s a lot to be said about a midlife crisis. The key word being crisis because in reality… it is far from it. What it is is an opportunity. It’s an even easier transition to make, because when you reach this stage, you’ve been here before. It probably hit you in your twenties, or perhaps approaching thirty.

That’s the quarter life crisis.

The time when you took stock before of where your life was before. The time when you reflected on the qualifications you had, looked around at your friend’s lives and realised that the majority of your friends now had their own family, and in order to transition through life, you looked at your society.

Not society in general, but the society of those close to you. Weighing up where your life was in comparison to what others were up to.

It’s a thing most of us are familiar with. Comparing our own lives to others around us.

The transition happens naturally. You get an education, move into a job, have a family, cut the working hours back (with a bit of luck anyway), raise your family and regress back to focusing on your career.

At the midlife stage though, you have an ace card to play.

That ace card is your life experience and with it you can do a lot.

You can capitalise on your life experience by taking what you’ve learned throughout your life, and your work experience and use that to transition into your own business.

You wouldn’t be the first person to have raised a family, reflected on your life up until forty and decided to become a nanny, childminder, or self-employed fitness coach.

We all learn a lot throughout our lives, but it’s how we apply that to our lives when we reach the stage of questioning what we’re doing and we’re going.

There’s a lot to get out of life, but as with everything, you only get out what you put in. Put the thought into self-growth, reflect upon your strengths and you’ll find that there’s an abundance of opportunity awaits you.

It’s just deciding the best direction for you that becomes the difficult part.

We all have our strengths, weaknesses, and to a certain extent – expectations.

If you expect that you’re going to be in the exact same position a decade from now, you wouldn’t be expecting much. You certainly wouldn’t be pushing yourself to become better.

Self growth, and personal development is of interest to everyone. Whether we admit or not, there’s always something we want to improve. It could be as simple as improving our vocabulary, or getting rid of a bad habit we’ve picked up on our journey through life.

Things happen, people change – we all move on.

Change happens, but throughout life, there are always times of major transitions. Switching careers, or moving into self-employment.

At what society deems to be the midlife point, which is any age upwards of 40, there comes the time to take stock of your life’s direction.

Usually that consists of thinking about the negative things in life, because you want to knock them out the equation, and replace them with positive outcomes.

That’s the reality of a midlife crisis and it’s why it’s not a crisis at all.

The only crisis there is – the crisis of your emotions

When you begin to assess your life, the emotions it conjures are usually not anything you’d be expecting. You could find yourself questioning your own identity.

  • Are you with the right partner?
  • Are you in the right career?
  • Do you want to reinvent yourself as the person you thought you’d be? You know, the guy with the super bike, riding the country roads at the weekends, while riding around to work in a top down sports car, with all the riches in life?
  • Do you need to relocate to somewhere you can get more out of life? Such as the case with someone living rurally, and want to experience a faster pace of life, with nightclubs, casinos, and race tracks where you can let your hair down and take up activities that aren’t available where you live just now.

The crisis is the emotions, because until they hit you, you cannot know what’s going to happen. But you need to take stock of the emotions before you make any rash decisions. Especially if you begin to call into question relationships, which could see you file for divorce, when it’s not the relationship that’s the problem.

It’s about finding out what you want from life, and speaking things through with those close to you.

The midlife point is the time for change and it’s the fear of change that causes the problems.

Change is inevitable throughout life. It happens naturally, as we transition through all the different stages. The early stages being from education into employment, then later climbing the career ladder, then later thinking about perhaps owning your own business. Especially for those with a family, you consider what you have to leave behind.

Since people are living longer, the midlife stage is not about thinking of the end of life as what people used to think of it as. It has more to do with what more we can contribute to the world that will leave a stamp that we’ve been here, and something for our families to cherish.

That could be as simple as owning your own home and leaving it to your child, or it could be building a business empire, franchising it perhaps, and leaving that to your family.

The crucial take is that you deal with the emotions and do not make rash decisions when you’re in an emotional state. If you begin to call into question where your life is going, or that you’d not got out of life what you’d expect to have by now, it’s probably the signs that you’ve reached that stage.

When you recognise that, see it for the potential that it is and that’s for reflection. Reflect on what you’ve achieved, and furthermore, what else you can achieve.

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