Midlife Crisis or New Start
As a midlifer myself, I can tell you that I really don’t like the words “midlife crisis”. They make me cringe. While I completely understand why that term is used often, I believe it puts a very negative spin on a time in our lives when we should be excited about a new start to our lives!
I just turned 41, so I’m a younger midlifer, but I’m feeling it! I have aches and pains where I never had aches and pains before. I don’t sleep as well as I used to, and I get night sweats something fierce! There are many changes that I’ve noticed, however, even when I’m feeling gross after three clothing changes throughout the night, I try to take a step back and evaluate what’s really going on.
New Found Freedom
My favorite thing about my life is that I have a lot of freedom! My two oldest kids are adults, and don’t live at home anymore. My two younger kids are 16 and almost-13, and they’re pretty easy to take care of. They have their activities, and I spend plenty of time driving them around, and spending time with them, but, after dinner is my time. I use that time to do whatever I want or need to do. I update my blog, knit, sew, paint, whatever I want! This definitely wasn’t happening when the kids were younger!
I’ve learned to embrace that freedom, and be thankful for it. Sure, I loved having babies and small children, but, at some point, you have to let go of the desire to take care of other’s. Really! You need to concentrate on yourself, and your relationships! Spouse, significant other, friendships…those are now the relationships that you want to nurture and maintain.
This takes me to the whole reason for this post. We all get depressed as we age. It may not necessarily be because we’re getting older so much as life is changing, in general. We don’t have kids to take care of anymore, and we have a lot more time on our hands! It can definitely be depressing, but these years don’t have to be a crisis! Remove the words “midlife crisis” from your vocabulary altogether! You need to reframe the way you think of these upcoming years.
14 Ways to Beat a “Midlife Crisis”
- Meditate – You need to learn how to be calm, and enjoy each day as it comes. Meditation has been proven to actually change the brain, and help us to become more aware of our own emotions. We can then, as we practice meditation, learn how to channel any negative thoughts into more positive one’s. Meditation can help us combat depression and anxiety. One of my favorite guided meditation channels is by Jason Stephenson. His voice is very calming, and he has many different meditations to choose from.
- Yoga – Another favorite practice of mine is yoga. It, like meditation, is calming, and relaxing, as well as great exercise! You can tone your body, and learn how to be more in tune with yourself when you practice yoga. My favorite yoga instructor is Adrienne. She has many different options, depending on your preferences, and plenty for the beginner!
- Eat Your Way Happy – In order to keep up your energy and stay healthy, eat plenty of fresh fruits and veggies, and high quality meats for protein. Do your best to stay away from too many carbs and sugar. We all know by now that sugar is the enemy, right? 😉 I’m not saying don’t indulge once in a while, but keep it at a minimum. You want to stay strong and healthy through these years!
- Friends – We all know that friends create a world of awesome for us! As we age, having a great group of friends becomes even more important than ever before! Did you know that having a good circle of friends can actually extend our lives? It’s true! We’re happier, healthier, and less stressed when we have great friends who are there to support us!
- Spend Time With Your Spouse – Or significant other. When the kids are little, it can be tough to spend quality time with your significant other. Don’t let your “midlife crisis” stand in the way of reconnecting with your s/o. We all need love and affection, and he or she is going through it too. If you want awesome tips for how to reconnect with your significant other, check out my post, 30 Ways to Reconnect to Your Spouse!
- Hobbies – What is it that you’ve been wanting to try, but never had the time? Do you have hobbies that interest you, but you just felt like you wouldn’t be able to fully immerse yourself in them? Well, now’s the time! The kids are old enough to fend for themselves for a while. Take this time to discover a hobby, or two, or ten, that you want to pursue! I love to knit, sew, garden, read, blog, and go horseback riding (it helps that we own a horse). 🙂 Maybe you love to dance. Well, sign up for dance lessons! Take the spouse along, and have some fun together!
- Get a Pet – If you don’t already have one, get a pet! Dogs and cats have proven to be great pets for keeping us young, and healthy. Just petting an animal reduces stress and lowers blood pressure. Dogs help get us out of the house for walks. If you don’t want to have to walk a dog, head over to the shelter and get yourself a cat. They’re easy to care for, are independent, but are also great for our health. Their purring has actually been proven to heal infections, and broken bones! Their purring is also therapeutic for us emotionally, as well as therapeutic for them!
- Get Outside – You may be feeling down, especially during the colder months, but getting outside into the fresh air is extremely beneficial for you. If you’re looking to boost your mood, step outside and just breathe in the fresh air. Stand in the sun and experience the benefits of it’s bright rays. You’ll find your mood lifted very quickly with the combo of fresh air and sun. Get out and do some gardening, or sit on your porch, or in your yard, and read a book or magazine. Take a walk, or a bike ride. Just get out there!
- Talk – Get it off your chest. Feeling anxious, depressed, scared? Talk to your significant other, a parent, sibling, or close friend. Don’t sit around stewing with your thoughts. There are major benefits to talking things out when you are having negative feelings. Those you trust may be able to help you view a problem in a different way, or help with solutions. And, there’s just feeling better after talking and getting those troubles out of your brain.
- Journal – If you really don’t feel like talking, or if there are things you just don’t want to tell others, then start a journal, or a private blog. Just as with talking, there are fantastic benefits to writing out your woes and getting them out of your head.
- Therapy – Sometimes, we need a pro to help us through difficult life transitions. This is totally OK and you should never feel ashamed of seeking the help of a professional! This is what they’re trained to do.
- Accept – This can be difficult for some people. Accepting that you’re going through a midlife crisis may be difficult, but let’s think this through. It happens to everyone. This, just like meditation, and yoga, takes practice. But if you work on it every single day, you’ll get there. 😉
- Let Go – In addition to accepting your “midlife crisis”, you also need to learn how to let go of the things that don’t matter. Again, this take practice, but don’t practice one day, and then give it all up the next. You need to be consistent, and you’ll find yourself letting all of the irritating crap go before you know it!
- Reframe – This isn’t a midlife crisis. This is a new beginning! Reframe how you think of this stage in your life. I know, I know. We’re getting older. But, we’re not there yet! Guess what? We’re never there. As long as we’re waking up each day, we’re living. Whether we’re 10, 40, or 80, if we’re alive, we have nothing to be sad about! Reframe the way you think about life, in general. We are all aging, so why not take like by the horns and live it? Travel, see your friends, make new friends, visit your kids (and grand kids, if you have them), cook yummy foods, try new things, create your own experiences.
These tips are meant to help you get through some of those tough times that we all inevitably need to get through. Your midlife years don’t have to be a crisis. They can be some of the most amazing, freeing, exciting times in your life! Don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter to get more exclusive content, freebies, and offers!