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Home Blog Building resilience Help! I’m having a Mid-Life Crisis?

Help! I’m having a Mid-Life Crisis?


Not quite myself

I’ve been feeling a bit out of sorts lately. I’m not entirely sure why, but I’ve definitely felt more anxious, more emotional, and not like myself at all. I don’t like feeling this way and I’ve been wracking my brain for a reason why this should be the case. On the face of things I should be feeling happy and content with my life; I have a great husband and we’ve just celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary, we have a wonderful young son, a lovely circle of friends, supportive family, and a job that allows me the flexibility to spend time with my son.

What's it all about?

So, why am I feeling unsettled and a little discontented? I’ve researched all sorts of things, from a vitamin D deficiency to hypothyroidism, to the symptoms of early onset menopause, and even depression. I’m not ashamed to admit I’ve suffered from stress and a period of mild depression some years ago, so I wondered if perhaps it had returned… I happened to mention all of this to a good friend of mine today and she told me she has been feeling exactly the same way as me for some time. Apparently women in their 40s (of which I am one!) commonly suffer a form of mid-life crisis and it looks like it might be my turn.

Mirroring Maslow's hierarchy of human needs, women in their 40s often feel the strain of meeting their needs of safety, sustainability, and status, on their own - because since the 1960's women have grown up with the message, "You can accomplish anything." This all adds up to a restless craving to realise our potential and as we hit our 40s we start to wonder what exactly it is that we’ve accomplished.

For 40-something women, unlike men, a mid-life crisis isn't simply about recovering lost youth. It's about looking at your life and wondering how you ended up where you are (particularly career wise) often thinking or wishing you were somewhere else. It’s also about your family and wondering if you’re doing your best for your family, your children, and ultimately yourself.

Building resilience

If you are questioning what is next for you, this is a great time to talk to your friends who might be going through a similar experience – just like I did today. One of the worst things busy women do is put their friendships on the back burner, but we don’t need to tough it out on our own. If you can find a friend who won't judge the struggle, and who might even be going through the same thing, try working through some questions together:

* What is it I feel I should have done by this point in my life?

* Is there something more important and fulfilling that I could focus on right now?

* What do I want more of in my life?

More than anything, don't let people tell you that you have no right to be unsettled. It’s ok to lose your sense of balance even when others think your life should be smooth and happy. It’s ok to question your purpose in life and say if you’re not happy in any areas of it. And it's ok to say, "I’m not sure who I am anymore". Sometimes you have to lose yourself to find yourself and it’s better to ask the questions so that, if necessary, you can make positive changes in your life. Which is what I intend to do. For some great tips on ways to look at life with more positivity, read our earlier blogs “5 Ways to Get Smiling More” and “Be inspired to make a change”.

Building resilience


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