The midlife crisis: redefined 


Apparently the term midlife crisis is a noun with a specific definition:

loss of self-confidence and feeling of anxiety or disappointment that can occur in early middle age.

I’m sorry but I totally disagree. Here’s why.

I was always under the impression that it meant total frivolity, the need to do something totally different, but a fast car, re-live your youth, that sort of thing.

However, having arrived in what might be termed ‘middle age’ (although I don’t agree!) I think I finally understand. And it’s not at all like they say it is.

In my 20’s I wanted to earn lots of qualifications, work my way up the corporate ladder, earn mega bucks, that sort of thing.

In my thirties I got married, lived the high life, bought a house, holidayed all round the world in expensive flashy hotels, dined out, bought a motorbike: I didn’t really think about money, I lived in the moment.

Then I got to my forties and started to look at things differently. Here’s how I now see it.

It’s not a ‘crisis’ it’s a realisation.

I wasted money, I worked too hard and didn’t see life for the finite journey that it was. I felt invincible and it felt like I had loads of time so why worry. This isn’t the case. My mum died suddenly of cancer a few years ago. She was just 21 years older than I am now. I began to resent my job, because I had no time for other interests. I began to see that happiness was what’s important, not money and it can’t buy you that.

So I do not believe it’s a midlife ‘CRISIS’ at all, I would call it more of a realisation.

Why spend most of my time working my way up to a high flying job when you can’t actually take it with you? (The money that is).

So now I …

  • Quit teaching and set up my own business. It’s hard, very hard. I’m more broke than I have ever been but I’m happier than I have ever been too.
  • Spend my spare time doing things that make me happy. Tramping, swimming, cycling, doing stuff just because. Not because there’s some race coming up that I need to train for. Just because I WANT TO.
  • I live modestly, but in a beautiful country where there are plenty of free pastimes out in the wide open countryside. And I have my husband and my health. What more could I want?

I would call that a crisis, would you?

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