Midlife crisis looming?
So, you’ve hit that time. You’ve come here because you’ve had a bit of a flame-out. Your batteries are flat, you’ve lost interest in things you used to enjoy. The beauty of your life has faded and left you in a dull routine, wondering what it’s all for. The meaning of life and your purpose have lost a bit of oomph. You feel like sh*t but you’re thinking of buying a new car or a new bike, switching careers or trying a sea change. You’re not ready for it, but you can feel your body and mind waning nonetheless. You start to feel tired and useless, lacking the sharp precision you used to have. You need help my friend.
The truth of midlife crisisIt happened to me. I had an excellent and highly enjoyable career in I.T. where my mind was my greatest asset (well it definitely wasn’t my people skills). Solving problems was fun and I could churn out stellar results without much effort. I experienced mastery and the joy of a craftsman in flexing my skills. For years I walked on water. Until… I began to lose that mental edge and started swimming around in problems that used to be easy. My memory waned and I had to make systems to re-find information I couldn’t remember. I lost interest in the chase – the tasks that used to excite me no longer held my attention. Bugger – midlife crisis! Was it time to buy some lycra? It was! A MAMIL was born. It amuses me to look back at that tragic figure now, but at the time the feelings of helplessness and redundancy were bitterly shocking.
How it feelsIf you’re hitting that place, all kinds of doubts and questions will likely be running around your mind. Fear will be creeping in to the smallest transactions, as you sense your loss of power and the status that went with it. You notice small unwelcome changes in your body. Your health might be playing up more than it used to, requiring more frequent medical attention and leaving you tired and demoralised. Life has lost its shine and so have you. The good news: if you’re willing now to open up about your fears and tackle them head on, you’re half way there.
Is this a midlife crisis?Here are some signs of midlife crisis:
- Successful but not happy
- Apathy including loss of interest in work, hobbies or sex
- Depression – low mood, sadness and lethargy
- Loss of drive
- Lower performance at work
- Less job satisfaction
- Loss of purpose
- Feeling that you’re being left behind
- Desire to walk away from your success
- Declining sleep quality or duration
- Feelings of pessimism, hopelessness or worthlessness
- Restlessness, anxiety and irritability
- Declining mental function
- Loss of memory
- Joint and muscle pain
- Lower levels of testosterone
- Erectile dysfunction
- Increasing digestive problems
- Bladder irritability
- Fading eyesight
MIDLIFE CRISIS: a transition of identity involving loss of self-confidence, anxiety or disappointment that can occur in middle-aged individuals, typically 45–64 years old