Innocence of childhood, energies and vibes of youthfulness, lessons of adulthood and wisdom of old age… Life manifests itself in many hues and shades. Each and every phase of your life reflects your journey towards self-refinement, achievements, learning, pleasure, pain, failures, success, knowledge and wisdom. In a way your life unfolds itself with new thoughts and motivated actions through every minute and each second. But, there are times when you would just want to halt and stop; ponder or think over the years passed by; about what you attained or lost; or about the meaning of life in general. This mostly happens once you become middle aged. The crises of life, the transition that one goes through and its repercussions that follow in due course during middle age is considered to be a sign of “midlife crisis”.
Technically, midlife crisis is a term developed by Elliott Jaques in the year 1965. Midlife refers to the time when adults realize about their own mortality, how much time is left for them and what have they done till the present juncture. Sometimes midlife crisis can be easily handled but, at times it becomes too much overwhelming to bear and leads to various psychopathological ailments. Have you come across someone going through midlife crisis? If yes, then it would be kind of you to share your experiences with us. It is something that can be resolved with therapeutic interventions, care and support. Do you know, what triggers midlife crisis? Let us look into some of the common triggers or causes of midlife crisis:
Causes of Midlife Crisis
- Day to day stress
- Death or loss of a loved one
- Hormonal changes in the body
- Problems or setbacks in career/profession
- Misunderstanding or ill-behavior/feeling hurt due to one’s own family, kith and kin or significant others
- Problems in marriage/relationship
- Problems related to children, family or life in general
Do you know, men and women experience midlife crisis differently? For men, it is caused by work related issues and for women; it is due to a negative self-evaluation of their roles. This leads to manifold behavioral repercussions. Let me tell you in what ways does midlife crisis interfere with one’s daily life functioning:
A person experiencing midlife crisis can suddenly ram into negative thoughts and maladaptive behavior triggered due to it. He/she may buy expensive stuff, live life lavishly, become suddenly depressed or feel hopeless, feeling of guilt or remorse may sink in, fear humiliation and stay away from socialization due to this, he/she may get overly obsessed over his/her appearance and so on. People with midlife crisis often see their life as incomplete, a failure and they want to make their life dazzle through any way they can.
Here is how it feels when midlife crisis sets in: I would like to share some meaningful lines with you…
“All three are hip-deep in midlife, when the eyes go and the waistline spreads and the city on the hill that shone so brightly in youth turns out to be more like a semi-incorporated town in the middle of a garbage strike. An age when a person can feel not so much himself as an inexplicably inferior version of himself.” – Mary McNamara
How to Deal with Midlife Crisis
Well, the good news is midlife crisis can be treated very effectively. The best part is it can be prevented as well. Simple efforts like talking to a friend or talking to a counselor helps one to deal with midlife crisis. Apart from this, more strategic intervention like Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT), Person-Centered Therapy, active resolution and coping with one’s problems/stressors or pressures, Gestalt Therapy, Psychoanalysis, good problem-solving and decision-making skills etc are some of the best ways to deal with and/or prevent midlife crisis.
Good and active lifestyle, proper nutrition, sleep and balanced diet are also some of the important helping factors that can keep midlife crisis at bay. The sparkling tool to avoid/deal with midlife crisis is to effectively cope with the ups and downs of life, to value yourself, believe in yourself, learn from your mistakes and celebrate your success.
Life is worth living in a meaningful way. So, try to live life in such a way that when you look back you can feel proud of your achievements, laugh over the moments that made you weak but still you fought back and stood strong again!!!