Those experiencing midlife crisis should try to remain positive and seek professional help if required.
As a woman, you tirelessly juggle a lot of responsibilities throughout your life. But as you become older, you start to questions your existence and achievements. In addition to these lingering thoughts on your mind, you are bothered by the strands of grey hair on your head and the baby wrinkles on your skin. The mirror is no longer your best friend and you are unable to appreciate yourself for your strengths. These feelings are signs of a midlife crisis. According to Healthline, women between 40 and 60 commonly go through such a phase.
While it allows some to readjust and refocus their life goals, others undergo mood disorders and depression, according to Dr. Heather Z. Lyons, a Baltimore-based therapist and co-founder of WithTherapy.com. “Often the question of ‘am I enough?’ is at the center of this stage of life. When someone cannot answer that question with an honest and vulnerable mindset, they can spiral into chaos," said Dr. Mark Mayfield to Women's Day. Therefore, being aware of the signs of a midlife crisis will help you navigate through it. Here's what you can look out for:
Unlike your youth, you do not see a sea of opportunities ahead of you during a midlife crisis. You feel old and scared of what is ahead of you. "One of the wonderful things about youth is that you really think you have all the time in the world and the future is where all your dreams will come true. That shifts at midlife, so the future isn't necessarily where all of these positive things are happening. In fact, it can potentially be a scary time," said Dr. Ludwig, according to Women's Day.
In such a scenario, it is important to deliberately channel your mind in a positive direction. Training your mind to think optimistically will prevent your life from falling apart.
When you reach your 40s, you are made to believe half of your life is over. These existent notions result in you questioning your own capabilities. Though you might have proven yourself in the past, you have reached a stage where you don't trust yourself. Consequently, you take bad decisions. "Frequently, the question of 'Am I enough?' is at the center of this stage of life. When someone cannot answer that question with an honest and vulnerable mindset they can spiral into chaos. As a result of this chaotic mindset, they may in turn make decisions that are out of impulse and out of a need to cope or numb," said Dr. Mayfield.
You were once a person who took every chance that came your way. But lately, you have been confidently saying "no." “For others, a midlife crisis might be seen in what they choose not to do such as turning down opportunities or setting new boundaries that suggest a shift to defining life for themselves rather than by others' standards," said Dr. Lyon. While in some cases, these changes may just redirect your life positively, it may prevent others from achieving their aims.
You feel drained out and lost. You are not drawn to your old hobbies and you have lost your passion for life. There is a feeling of emptiness and disinterest. Christine Hueber, a member of the Forbes Coaches Council advises women going through a midlife crisis to consciously appreciate the blessings they have in life. "My top tip is to appreciate what's working in your life, then take action every day to shape your life how you want it to be. Resolutely move forward, let go, and leave the past in the past," said Hueber.
Midlife crisis very much linked to your mental state. The emotional struggles that you face due to the condition often affect your physical health. Therefore, you might experience sudden weight loss or gain. While you might be able to handle it on your own sometimes, it is always better to seek professional help if the changes start to affect you radically.
The mind and body are deeply connected and so, when you are struggling emotionally, it will get manifested in the form of physical pain such as headaches and gastrointestinal issues, according to Mayo Clinic. These physical symptoms may occur due to other health conditions but if you begin to constantly experience it out of the blue, you might want to seek help.