It’s interesting how whenever we hear the term “midlife crisis,” we tend to think of a middle aged man bowing out from the life he’s been living to go buy a red sports car and start dating a hot blonde (that is usually quite a few years younger than him). We often overlook the fact that women also experience midlife crises.
I was working with someone just this morning who was in this situation, and I felt inspired to write an article for you about what a midlife crisis in women feels like, why it happens, and what you can do to navigate this challenging situation in the best way possible.
I’ll be going over the signs of a midlife crisis in women, how our society creates an environment in which people feel pressures that give rise to crises at certain ages, and what tools and techniques are available to you. Whether you are the one experiencing this crisis in your life or if it’s your significant other, you are in the right place to find solutions.
It can be extremely taxing to go through a crisis at any age, but I want you to rest assured that it’s a temporary period that you can get through gracefully. So let’s explore the ins and outs of a midlife crisis in women!
Midlife crisis women: What it feels like
Both men and women experience midlife crises, and it usually is all rooted in a sense of sudden unrest. There is usually an oppressive fear of growing old that becomes more and more present, until it starts making a person start doing things that create big changes in their lives.
So when it comes to midlife crises in women and in men, there is usually a strong urge to change the direction of your life.
You start to feel anxiety about the quality of your life, you start to doubt or maybe even regret certain decisions you made in terms of your personal life or your professional career, and you might want to quit the commitment, job or relationship that has started to make you feel trapped.
One of the markers of a midlife crisis for women is when work or children (or lack thereof) start to become a source of stress. In addition to this, there is often an identity crisis that makes you feel like you need to redefine your life, your values, your image, and your priorities.
One subtle difference that I’ve noticed between a midlife crisis for women and a midlife crisis for men is that women will start to become obsessed with health and will suddenly want to reshape their body image.
This of course is primarily linked to our society and how we place such high pressure on everyone to be young, fit, and attractive. With these types of expectations it comes as no surprise that people start to experience an existential crisis at any age!
Another indictor of a midlife crisis in women is the fear of not having goals, or worrying that your goals are not realistic, which is closely linked to the fear of getting old, the fear of missing out on dreams, the fear of death or illness, or even fear of the loss of swagger!
This is why you want to start doing things that make you feel young again, especially when the children have left the house to go off to school or start their adult lives.
You might start to fixate on creating a lifestyle change that provides more financial stability, more comfort and more opportunities.
The other thing that is often closely linked to midlife crises in women is the onset of menopause which can happen as early as in your 40s. There are biological and psychological changes at play and there is a decline in reproductive hormones.
While this is going on, it’s extremely important to take care of yourself and be acknowledge what you are going through. The fact that you’re already online reading up on it is a great indicator that you’re willing to do what it takes to get to the other side of this period in the best way possible!
Women midlife crisis: The best way to deal with it
Mary, the client I was working with earlier today, came to me a few months back because she recognized that she was experiencing some serious unrest and felt like she wanted to get out of the life that she had created for herself with her husband and her two children.
She couldn’t put her finger on what the specific problem was, but she continuously felt a sense of anxiety whenever she thought about her home, the fact that she had quit her job to take care of their kids, her age, and what the future was looking like for her.
While we explored what she was feeling, she was adamant that she still loved her husband and didn’t want to leave him or her family, but she felt overwhelmed and pressured by her role as The Mother and The Wife.
I remember one day she said to me, “I guess the easiest way for me to describe the way I’m feeling is that I would just love to hit the reset button in my life.”
She was struggling with all the responsibilities that had piled up over the years, and she didn’t feel ready to let go of her youth and freedom.
So we started to work on finding a sustained peace of mind while living in the moment, so that we could define a path towards rebuilding a life that is more in line with her new values, interests and aspirations.
When you are experiencing a crisis, whether you are a middle aged woman or twenty-three years old, it’s very important to keep your eyes open and define short term and long term solutions.
By the way, it is very common for people in their twenties and thirties to go through crises as well. It is not something that is only reserved for people of a certain age, and everyone that goes through it will experience the five stages of a midlife crisis.
You’ll notice that it’s actually very similar to the five stages of grief because you are in fact going through a change that entails grieving the loss of how your life was up until now.
While this is going on, I want to bring your attention to the importance of being aware of how your actions are affecting your loved ones. When you’re experiencing emotional and mental unrest, it’s really easy to feel disconnected from those around you, but they are still your friends and family so it’s very important to be aware. Include them in your process and let them in on what kind of changes you’re going to be making and why.
When it comes to how to overcome a midlife crisis for women (and men), it goes without saying that you’ve got to be gentle with yourself in this process as well. Be extra careful to limit sudden life changing decisions, because this could very easily lead to regrets when you’ve reached the other side of this crisis.
If you’re feeling trapped and frustrated by certain commitments and responsibilities, try to go back and understand why you made certain commitments and choices and while you’re exploring these things, make sure you distinguish the selfless behavior from the selfish, destructive ones. In addition to this, if you’re feeling like you could use a boost of self confidence, I encourage you to download our product specifically designed to help you overcome insecurities once and for all. To access it, all you have to do is click here.
Another thing I want to bring to your attention to is the importance of NOT fighting this transformation. We all evolve and our lives transform, and this doesn’t have to be a bad thing. If you’re able to prioritize your well-being and really pay attention to cultivating a life that is healthy and fulfilling, you are only setting yourself up for future success.
Getting to the other side of a mid life crisis
Each and every person is unique and will have different aspects of their lives that they’re going to want to change when they’re going through a crisis, and the solution really lies in defining new goals for yourself while being careful to avoid brash decisions that you might end up regretting later on down the line.
It’s definitely a challenging period, but I want you to rest assured and know that we are here to help you every step of the way. As a team of love and relationship coaches specialized in personal well being, we can help you to carve out a new path that grants you long term happiness. To work with me or a member of my team, all you have to do is reach out to us by clicking here. We can define a custom action plan that can grant you access to inner peace sooner than you thought possible.
The solutions will look a little different for every person, but as you start to make the necessary changes, you will start to feel less extreme and you will start to take accountability. When you start to usher in a feeling of sustained peace of mind again, you’ll start to feel like you don’t need more and you don’t need to make life altering changes anymore.
Again, this period is temporary so don’t panic. Just be gentle with yourself and with your loved ones while you define what concrete changes and improvements need to be made in your life, and this period of unrest will subside.
Surviving a midlife crisis for women
As I’ve been saying, an existential crisis is not reserved for men. Both men and women of all ages can experience this, but no one is doomed to having to feel like this for the rest of their lives. We all go through stages in our lives and these moments of unrest are all part of the process. We can kind of look at them as growing pains because we are always evolving, and changes can often be challenging.
We feel stressed out about the direction of our lives, anxiety about the quality of our lives, pressure from our families and jobs (or lack thereof), and we can start to feel the desire to quit the commitment that makes you feel trapped. There is also the fear of not being able to reach your goals or of missing out on certain aspects of life, and it can even result in an identity crisis.
There is a common theme of fear in a midlife crisis for women and men, so it’s crucial to acknowledge what you are going through and do research. You’ll be experiencing the five stages of a crisis, so be gentle with yourself and with those around you.
Whatever your age may be, whether you’re experiencing a midlife crisis at 30 or at 70, the key to success is to slowly rebuild a life that is more aligned with your new values, interests and aspirations.
And as I said above, we are here to help. Join the Happily Committed Project and transform your life in a meaningful and dignified way with the help of a team that is dedicated to helping people find long term happiness!
I sincerely wish you all the best
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