Midlife seems to contain many fears, but what if our fear of them is blocking the road to happiness? This month, I lift the veil on some of those fears and show how confronting them and working through them can lead to renewed strength and resilience.
The many crises of midlife are rooted in the fetishisation of youth. When teenagers were invented in the Sixties, the joys of middle age were reinvented too as repositories of boredom, frustration, and small c conservatism. Since then, those entering their forties and fifties have increasingly embarked on a largely futile attempt to hold back the tide of time and recapture a youth that they probably didn’t have in the first place.
Do any of the following fears ring a bell?
· Expanding waistline, grey hair, sagging skin?
· Energies that once propelled you out of bed that now seem to have faded or disappeared?
· The realisation that you’ve probably peeked in your career?
· The indefinable rootlessness that seems to set in when the children fly the nest?
· The realisation that you are now closer to death than to birth?
· Add your own fears here….
If you think about it for more than a few seconds, it should become obvious that the fear is all in the language. Just as we know that adopting an attitude of victim-hood always robs us of our true power, so using victim language to describe our feelings about middle age will also leave us feeling powerless.
The trick, then, is to reshape the language you are using.
Instead of… Use…
I’m getting fat I’m going to eat healthily
Life seems aimless I’m going to use this time to create my future
I’ve lost my role I’m going to celebrate the wisdom I’ve gained from bringing up
my children and embrace the next chapter
I’m getting old! I’m going to use my awareness of the finite nature of life to
focus my mind on all I want to achieve
You get the point! This isn’t just positive thinking, it’s about reshaping the way we talk to ourselves. It’s ditching victim-hood in favour of a powerfully creative role in our own lives.
Over the years, I’ve met a number of people who, when faced with a diagnosis of terminal illness, have embraced the opportunity to project manage what remained of their lives with a laser-like focus that eluded them when they thought they were healthy.
To do this well you will almost certainly need help!
You need positive friends and relatives who love you and can see your potential. Anyone who doesn’t fit this description gets sacked, side-lined or disenfranchised – they don’t get a vote in your life!
You also need a coach and/or mentor, who is skilled in helping you to put your thoughts in order and keep you accountable to your best self. That’s where I come in.
My job is to be your champion and your critical friend. My training allows me to ask the right questions and my experience allows me to interpret the patterns in your journey and reflect with you so as to help you to stay on track.
To start your new chapter with confidence, reliance and determination,
call me on (+44) 07530 007163 or email email@example.com