Midlife Crisis
By: Cherie Scheurich, Ph.D., LPC, CHLC

The fact that you are reading this article tells me that you or someone you know may be suffering the intense pain of midlife crisis right now. Usually when people begin to seek help, they are fairly well into their suffering and have realized and acknowledged that something strange is going on inside them. Midlife crisis can be a very scary thing. Nothing that used to “be” is any more. You wake up one day and find yourself in an unrecognizable environment and situation, and you wonder how and why you got there. You just don’t seem to fit and you can’t figure out why. You look around at all the circumstances of your life and ask, “Is this all there is?” “I’m 40 (or 50) something and this is all I’ve done?” You most likely have nice things, a comfortable life, and some good people in your life, but you feel like something very important is missing. Sometimes a degree of guilt surfaces that causes you to doubt your own worthiness. You wonder, “What’s the matter with me?”

All of a sudden, a uniquely strange anxiety sets in, and you feel compelled and driven to make a radical change. The worst part is that you don’t know what those changes should be. You’re not sure what you want, or how to get it. You don’t even know who you are. The old you is chipping away. You feel empty and hollow, and you wonder if you have the strength to look for something else, if you knew what you are looking for. You probably still love some or most of the people in your present life, but you don’t love yourself – you don’t even like you. Your feelings about your identity and what’s missing take precedence your loved ones. You feel uncomfortable in your own skin. You’re confused. You’re anxious. You’re tired. You’re afraid. You don’t understand.

You probably try to hold on to your present situation for some time, while thinking, “Maybe this will pass.” But, it doesn’t. It gets progressively worse, and you sink deeper and deeper into a funk of uncertainty, emptiness, anxiety, depression, and confusion. You can no longer focus or concentrate. Your thoughts keep distracting back to your uncomfortable situation. Until, finally (this can take a long time), you decide you have to do something. You begin to stray away from the old life. You do a variety of really weird and sometimes really dumb things. You have some sense of excitement over the new behaviors, while your friends and family begin to wonder, “What the hell is wrong with him/her?” Your family might say, “I don’t know you anymore,” or “Who are you?”

“Crisis” by definition implies that something devastating happens and, during midlife crisis, it usually does. An actual crisis can precipitate the initial questioning stage, or a crisis can occur during, or sometime after you begin to question life. The crisis is often a situation involving great loss. Something you had or loved or knew, no longer exists. At first, you might think that somebody else did this to you. But unbeknownst to you, in some mysterious way, you actually manifest this crisis to facilitate your own growth. This loss is what truly opens you up to the suffering of midlife crisis that I was talking about earlier. It hurts badly. You thought you were confused and sad before, now you’re totally devastated. Midlife crisis is like no other, it empties out your old identity to the point that you no longer recognize any part of your old self. On the other hand, some people don’t experience an actual “crisis” or loss per se prior to manifesting their growth. For these people, a bizarre change in their thoughts and feelings catapults a “midlife crisis” stage. Either way, this is the ultimate life challenge that will either make you or break you!

Does any of this sound familiar? If so, yes, you are in midlife crisis.
The good news is that midlife crisis is a normal stage of human development. Not everyone gets to experience it, however. Is seems that midlife crisis is reserved for only a select few people. Actually, a larger percentage of people may enter this phase, but scientists speculate that only about 3-5% of the entire population resolve it and grow into the peak stages of human development. The fact that you are seeking information by reading this article is a good sign that you have the potential to resolve midlife crisis.

Midlife crisis takes a long time. I’ve been studying this transitional phase of development for the past eight years, and everyone that I have encountered has suffered in this confused state for several years before resolution manifests. Ironically, since I have resolved my questioning stage, I can honestly say that midlife crisis was the best thing that ever happened to me. This experience is like the “dues” I paid for a better life. I’m extremely better for it. I’ve learned so much and changed enormously.

Lotus Holistic Life offers Holistic Life Coaching and a necessary Midlife Crisis Workbook to help those suffering through midlife crisis. Having an experienced life coach can definitely help those suffering through midlife crisis understand the changes that are happening to them as well as help to provide transitional skills to get you through it much more quickly and much less painfully.

Author's Bio: 

Cherie is an experienced Holistic Life Coach, a Licensed Professional Counselor, and a Certified Holistic Life Coach. She has many years of experience working with clients suffering through crisis and severe life changes. Lotus Holistic Life offers Holistic Life Coaching as well as a wide variety of self-help workbooks to help people manifest harmonious living and the superior lives you deserve. http://www.LotusHolisticLife.com