Midlife crisis is very real! Here’s how to keep it at bay

Midlife crisis generally happens after the age of 40 and is accompanied by feelings of regret and sadness. Know how to deal with it.
Woman going through midlife crisis
Mid life crises can happen to anyone over the age of 40. Image courtesy: Freepik
Anjuri Nayar Singh Published: 19 Dec 2023, 10:30 am IST
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Are you in your 40s and have been going through feelings of dejection, loneliness and regret? Well, you might be going through a midlife crisis. Yes, midlife crisis is very real and can happen to anyone after 40 or 50. This is usually the time when most couples have grown up kids, and an empty nest. However, there are ways to come out of this emotional low. Read on to know the ways to make yourself feel better!

What is midlife crisis?

Midlife crisis is a time period of transition in life when someone struggles with their identity and confidence, self respect, and self worth as a human being. It happens between the age of 40-60 years and it is seen in both men and women.

“This is a period when you children are grown up. They have their own identity, whereas you feel that emptiness in your lives,” counseling psychologist Anu Goel tells Health Shots.

What are the symptoms of midlife crisis?

There are some tell-tale signs of midlife crisis.

1. Thinking a lot

Thinking extensively about the past is a sign of midlife crisis. Seeing what was right and wrong in the past, thinking about the mistakes have been made, is a common symptom of this.

2. Feelings of regret

There is a constant feeling of regret. You think what would have happened if I had married someone else, or if I had not married at all, would it have been better if I was single? Regrets of the past is common during a midlife crisis.

paper smiles displayed
Sadness is a big symptom of mid life crises. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

3. Feeling sad

You constantly find yourself feeling sad and having lack of confidence. There is a feeling of helplessness that comes from thinking that you have not taken the right decisions in life.

Also Read: 10 ways to stop feeling sad to give your mood a boost

4. Constant boredom

This is a time when your kids have grown up and so there is no one who requires you or is questioning your lives. No one is there to ask how you are doing or why you are doing something specific. This often becomes boring for people.

5. Feeling emotional

People often find themselves remembering old things and feeling very emotional and angry. You are often comparing yourselves with friends and other people of the same age.

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6. Menopause

Women go through menopause at the same time as mid life crises and hence they tend to be emotionally very charged. They might be very snappy, angry and react very easily.

7. Impulsive

People often tend to make impulsive decisions which they regret later. They don’t think much about their current lives and end up taking very impulsive steps.

8. Think of growing old

People realise that their lifestyle has changed now. They have retirement age coming. They are getting older. People even think of death and lose people.

How long does midlife crisis last?

There is no time frame that can be given when it comes to how long midlife crisis can last. “Some people don’t even have it, but some people go through it. In men, it lasts at least for 5-10 years, but for women its for 2-5 years. It fluctuates,” says Goel.

How to handle midlife crisis?

There are some basic lifestyle changes and mental health steps that can be taken to help with mid life crises.

1. Accepting your situation

Realising that you are dealing with a midlife crisis, and then working towards feeling better always helps. Acknowledging it makes it easier to deal with it.

2. Setting new goals

There is a constant feeling of emptiness you go through and this can be managed by setting new goals. These would be your own goals, maybe you want to learn something, an instrument or following a hobby.

3. Social media detox

Some people get affected by what they see on social media. So, if you feel that it is affecting you, try avoiding it and keep it at a less pace.

A woman talking to another woman
Expressing your feelings and talking to close ones helps with mid life crises. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

4. Share your feelings

Sharing your feelings with someone else will help. Maybe they are going through the same feelings as well. They can understand your emotions better.

5. Accepting yourself and your life

Expressing yourself and accepting the way your life has turned out will help. Reframing you worth for yourself will keep this crises at bay.

6. Stay away from negative coping mechanisms

Some people get into negative methods of copying with mid life crises. Try to avoid those as it will only make this crises worse for you. Instead, be around happy people.

7. Physical health

Keeping yourself healthy is very important. Make sure you follow a healthy lifestyle and eat well.

8. Pampering yourself

Taking care of your physical health, emotional health and self care also helps you to feel better. Do things that you didn’t have time for earlier.

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About the Author

Anjuri Nayar Singh has over 12 years of experience in writing for various topics including lifestyle, films, television and OTT. She also writes on art and culture, education and human interest stories. ...Read More

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