Midlife Crisis or Midlife Transformation?
Do you feel the winds of Midlife Transformation? Life around age 50 can catch you shockingly off guard. It could be a retirement plan leaflet coming though through the door one morning. It could be your HR manager asking you about your plans for the future after you finish work, or your kids putting in their university applications. Sadly, sometimes it can be the death of a parent.
Suddenly, somehow, whilst you had been dashing around being a mother, wife or daughter, everything has changed without you noticing it approaching. You can feel it in the air, a time of midlife transformation. The sands beneath your feet are shifting.
This can be an extremely disquieting feeling. The stability that you have built up over the years has gone. It’s all change. Suddenly you can see retirement on the horizon and you start to question where you are going. Where do you want to be in 10 years? Even WHO do you want to be?
It can be a time of confusion, of wheel spinning, of trial and error. But one thing is also true and that is that it’s a time of great opportunity for women. A time of growth. A time when you can transform into the person you always wanted to be but who got crushed under the weight of the roles you were expected to play.
You may feel you have no idea where you want to go. That’s OK. One thing that you can do is eliminate the things you DON’T want. That way your path will become clearer and your destiny will eventually emerge.
It’s a transition that we are left to cope with alone. Like menopause, the midlife transition for women is something which isn’t often spoken about by our mothers or people who had gone through it before us. There is little information sent back from the trenches about how to approach it. We can feel like we are just fudging through on our own.
Whilst everyone’s journey is different, there are a few secrets which will help you in your midlife transition. They will smooth the way helping you emerge unscathed on the other side of your transformation into the person you always were inside.
1 – It’s not a moment. It’s a journey – Embrace the Midlife Transformation process
Think of the classic metamorphosis journey, that of the caterpillar to a beautiful butterfly. The butterfly doesn’t immediately emerge fully formed into her new glory. There is a period where she hides away from the world in her chrysalis and completely remodels her body rebuilding everything from the ground up. Only when she has completed this difficult and draining process does she emerge in her new spectacular form.
In the same way, your midlife transformation will not happen overnight. It’s a process. Don’t expect overnight change or a resolution to all your questions. Just relax, go with the flow and see where the journey takes you.
“Maybe the journey isn’t so much about becoming anything. Maybe it’s about un-becoming everything that isn’t really you, so you can be who you were meant to be in the first place.”
2 – Keep your plans to yourself to protect your energy
Have you ever been really excited about an idea or plan, only to have someone pour cold water on your ideas? Their negativity puts doubt in your mind about if you could really achieve it and then you lose confidence and stop what you were doing. This happens a lot. There will always be negative people, naysayers and people who will deplete your transformational energy.
Maybe they feel trapped and unhappy themselves and feel threatened by seeing someone else get up and do something.
To avoid this energy depletion, keep quiet about your plans whilst they are germinating. Treat them like delicate seedlings and protect them from the outside elements of negativity. Only when they are strong enough to weather the storm should you reveal them to the world.
“Loose lips sink ships”
WWII Propaganda Slogan
3 – You must be brave. The universe rewards bravery
Take a deep breath… Shit just got real!
Midlife is the time to step up the plate and take centre stage. There’s no time to mess about any more. It’s time to use the gifts you were given for the good of yourself and the world.
But this is a scary concept. It may involve stepping right out of your comfort zone and into the unknown. It could involve
- Leaving your job of many years and starting up a business on your own…
- Leaving an unhappy marriage and living on your own for the first time in years
- Being your authentic self without hiding
- Asking for what YOU want instead of trying to make everyone else happy
This requires great bravery on your part. You have to keep the end goal in mind and keep moving towards it with courage and the knowledge that you are on the right path.
Be brave and the universe will reward your bravery.
“Midlife: when the Universe grabs your shoulders and tells you “I’m not f-ing around, use the gifts you were given.”
Dr. Brené Brown
4 – if you put your energy out into the world, it will come back to you…
This is one of the biggest secrets of life and one I wish I had known years ago when I was younger. Have you ever noticed that energy works like a boomerang? When you project positive energy out it will come back to you tenfold. Sadly the opposite is also true. Do you have a negative friend who all the bad things and mishaps seem to happen to?
Whatever your midlife transition plans, this law will help once you are ready to reveal your ideas to the world. For example.
- You have a new business. You chat about it to your hairdresser who turns out to know just the right person to help you move onto the next step.
- You want to connect more with other women of the same age to form a support group. You mention it on Facebook which results in a growing network of women interested in connecting too.
Keeping this principle in mind and focussing on positive energy will help your midlife transition be a smoother one. Be helpful and positive and the good you create will come back to you.
“As she has planted, so does she harvest; such is the field of karma.”
Sri Guru Granth Sahib
5 – You don’t quit no matter how hard the journey gets
Midlife Transformation can be a difficult time. Whatever your goal it’s very easy to get distracted and give up. To think “I’ll never be able to do this so I won’t start it” Fear of failure can mean quitting before you even start.
Many people give up on a goal because they get distracted by what others are doing or they don’t believe in themselves enough.
One of the biggest goal killers is a lack of discipline to see a project through to the end.
You have to keep working towards your goals on the days you feel uninspired and wonder what the hell you are doing. Keep putting one foot in front of the both other every day and you will eventually end up at the place you want to be. The secret is to be tenacious and just not quit, no matter how hard things are.
Do you want to live the rest of your life wondering what if?
I hated every minute of training, but I said, ‘Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.’
In the end, the mid-life transition process is a transformation we all have to go through. It’s a time of flux and change that is thrust upon us by the circumstances of our life.
It can be exciting, scary, traumatic, positive and frustrating in equal measure. A new you is being birthed and that can always be a difficult process.
Don’t fight it. Take those deep breaths, relax and work with the labour pains. There’s no rush.
Sooner or later a spectacular new being will emerge to take on the world with fresh and positive energy…