Midlife Crisis & Transition Psychotherapy Counselling | Oakville, Mississauga, Burlington
The second half of life is different. In the first half, most people are striving to become productive, independent and respected members of the society. By the middle of life, many individuals are conscious that life does not last forever. This leads individuals to prize every day and to seek the very most they can get out of every bit of living.
In the second half of life, starting at mid-life, the focus becomes very individual. What, at this stage in life, is meaningful to me? The concern is not so much to please others, or to gain the respect of others, as it is to be true to oneself.
The Feelings and Concerns of the Second Half of Life
For the individual entering midlife transition and the second half of life, many (sometimes conflicting) feelings may arise. To the midlife individual, caught up in the routine of work, family and possibly elder care, life may seem joyless and flavourless. Professional roles, perhaps once hard fought for, can now seem routine, stale and even meaningless. Today, older individuals may feel that work is much more demanding than they would wish.
Similarly, key relationships may become problematic, seem to offer little, and even get in the way. Individuals, often for the first time in their lives, may need to seriously ask themselves whether they need to leave a relationship, whether it can possibly be made to work. This is the very stuff of midlife transition — or even midlife crisis.
Midlife individuals often face complex, conflicting emotions. On the one hand, there may be strong regret, and wondering, “Has it all been worth it?” Simultaneously, the individual may wonder, “What do I want to do, or to be, for the rest of my life?” Often, creative desires emerge or re-emerge, and a hunger for new, or quality, experiences. All in conjunction with anxiety about the future, and only limited time to plan, while yet feeling the urgency of doing so.
Midlife individuals yearn to get beyond a sense of stuckness, and to get clarity about the nature of their own personal direction in life. This includes moving into an increasing sense of acceptance of life as it is, and finding meaning through rich experiences, valuable relationships, and living out values that are fundamental to their natures. Individuals yearn to live in possibility, and the discovery that life still has much for them. They hope to find a way through life’s obstacles, to meaning.
Depth psychotherapy embodies a non-judgemental respect for the individual’s journey. When guided by a therapist who respectfully listens to a person’s real story, it can assist immensely in the midlife transition (or midlife crisis) and the second half of life.