A midlife crisis is a period of anxiety, stress, confusion, and existential questioning that typically occurs between the ages of 40-65.
It is often associated with feeling as though one’s life has not turned out as expected or that it may be too late to make changes.
Everyone experiences midlife differently. While some people experience great difficulty during this time period, others view this process in a more positive light by discovering new interests and passions.
Signs of Midlife Crisis
There isn’t exactly a firm criteria for determining when someone is going through a midlife crisis. However, common signs include changes in behavior such as:
● Increased boredom and dissatisfaction with life overall.
● Feeling overwhelmed either by work or home-life responsibilities
● Wishing for a re-do on decisions made earlier in life
● Questioning relationships, marriage, friendships, or important life decisions
● Feeling unheard or unvalued in conversations
● Heightened discontent with physical appearance
● Restlessness or irritability
If any combination of these applies to you, then it could be time to take action toward creating positive change in your life.
Steps Toward A Fresh Start
Taking steps toward improving your mental and physical health can be beneficial during the midlife transition.
Here are some tips to help guide you through this process:
● Spend time reflecting on past successes and milestones: This will give perspective into all that has already been accomplished in life thus far.
● Exercise regularly: Exercise doesn’t have to be expensive or time-consuming. Any activity that elevates your heart rate, even brisk walking or dancing, is good. Aim for at least 150 minutes of physical activity every week.
● Reconnect with old friends: Establishing connections outside the immediate family helps build meaningful relationships that provide external support throughout difficult times.
● Set realistic goals for oneself: Having tangible objectives gives focus and direction instead of living aimlessly without focus. Goals should be challenging enough to stimulate your interest, but not so unattainable that they drain your motivation.
● Seek professional help if needed: Mental illness should not be left unacknowledged or untreated. Talking to someone who specializes in mental health can assist greatly in getting back on track emotionally.
Reframing Your Perspective
Growing older doesn’t need to be viewed as something negative. You are never too old to learn, grow, and change.
While the journey ahead might feel daunting at first, reframing your perspective on midlife can help you focus on the opportunities for growth and fulfillment.
Consider these tips to help shift your thinking:
● Try new experiences: Try something new and outside your comfort zone. This could be anything from a new hobby, to learning a new language, or volunteering in your community.
● Find purpose and meaning: Take time to reflect on what truly matters in life. Whether it’s spending time with family, making a positive impact in your community, or pursuing your passions, finding purpose can bring a new level of satisfaction and joy.
● Embrace change: Rather than fearing change, embrace it as an opportunity for growth and improvement. This could mean leaving a job you no longer enjoy or ending a relationship that no longer serves you.
● Invest in self-care: This includes things like good nutrition, sleep, and physical activity, but also setting boundaries, asking for help when needed, and finding time for relaxation and stress relief.