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Feeling Detached? It Could Be a Sign of Midlife Crisis
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  • We know about the signs of aging — sagging skin, flabs, wrinkles and all — but we rarely think about the signs of midlife. What, really, is the so-called “midlife” about? 

    Midlife is a stage we all go through in adulthood. It is being in the middle — not young, not old. Not naive, but mature. Maybe not a lola, but definitely a “tita.” 

    Many have thought of midlife to be the same as menopause. They may be related, but they’re not the same: Midlife is psychological, while menopause is physiological. You may be a candidate for “mid-lifing” if you are 35 years old and above, but it could also happen early to some, like this author. 

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    Could you be in your midlife season? Here are some psycho-emotional signals that you should be aware of so you could start working on and reconciling them.

    Signs of a midlife crisis

    A sense of uncertainty with yourself

    Suddenly, you are no longer sure and confident about yourself. You do not know anymore what’s next for you. You would find yourself having many questions and nagging feelings, and even doubts surfacing. Even trapped emotions that you’ve never felt before are coming out. You begin to question your worth and who you are really. 

    A sense of dissatisfaction with your realities

    There is that feeling of being pulled into different directions, on where you should go and what you should do. While you already have what you want, something still does not feel right.  The issues that used to bother you before don’t seem to matter anymore. At times, it would seem like you just want a different life, as you search for meaning.


    A sense of restlessness

    You want to rest but cannot. You feel like you want to throw in the towel.  You want to change your pace, but life happens. You may be so tired from your work and even with the people close to you. You get the feeling that you want to stop from caring too much and giving too much.

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    Those mentioned above are just some of the signs of being at midlife. Many women go through it without even realizing... or sometimes it’s just hard to admit that we are in that stage. We have been conditioned to be who we are, and have been running in our comfort zones all our lives. Often, before you realize that you are mid-lifing, you’ve already gotten entangled with inner issues that manifest in our relationships, career, health, and even faith.  

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    The crucial thing about midlife is actually confronting the issues that we have been neglecting, which have been left unresolved in our past. As we traverse the season that is midlife, we will likely find ourselves dealing with all sorts of issues, from priority shifts and personal changes to emotional upheavals and relationship challenges. While many want to avoid it, we just cannot. It is something we have to do. 

    The good news is that midlife doesn’t have to be difficult. It is the time to get to know ourselves once again – the adult and authentic side of who we are! The excruciating yet thrilling thing to do is to work through it healthily and thoughtfully.

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    Midlife need not be a crisis. We have a choice to be proactive about life and have a beautiful midlife season. We can re-define it, re-calibrate ourselves and restore who we really are, inside and out. All we need to do is pause, ponder and progress, and be responsible with ourselves and our lives.

    Michele Alignay, Ph.D., is a psychologist, guidance counselor, teacher, wife, and mother. Join her in Martha’s Pause: Re-Defining Mid-Life, a workshop on September 28, 2019 at the Environmental Studies Institute, Miriam College, Katipunan, Quezon City. Let her help you sift through issues to give meaning to the words self-worth, self-love, and self-care. Women in their 30s onwards can benefit well from this session, or even the young ones who need to have a deeper self-journey! For more details, visit www.michelealignay.com.

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