Six things not to do if you are having a midlife crisis
At least without thinking about them
We have all been there. Wondering what happened to that bright young thing you used to be and if there is any way you can bring back that spark into your life. But before you do anything rash that you might regret, stop, and think about what you are doing. Make sure you know what it is you really want and understand the underlying problem.
Here are six things that you have to avoid doing on the spur of the moment. I’m not saying you can’t do these things at all. Just that you really need to understand what you are doing and why before you do anything drastic.
Pack in your job
You’ve been doing the same job for the last 10 years and you’re bored. You don’t care about promotions anymore, you think the company sucks, your manager is an idiot, and your job just seems pointless. What you really want to do is to tell them all to get stuffed and go off and become an artist, a writer or join a band. You have still got dreams. Anything rather than sit at the same desk with the same people doing the same thing, again and again, every day until you retire or die.
Leave your partner
You have been together forever, built a home, raised the kids, and had some great times. But now you seem to have nothing in common, you argue all the time, and can’t remember the last time you enjoyed each other’s company. In fact, if you have to watch him or her, lying on the sofa, snoring away in their grubby pyjamas while the TV blares in the background, with that horrible bit of dribble coming out of their mouth you are going to bludgeon them to death with the nearest object. Prison would be better than spending the next 10 years like this.
Sell your belongings and go and live in a monastery in Nepal
Just recently you have been contemplating the meaning of life. What is it all about? You are halfway through your life now, what does it mean? What about your mortality? How much longer have you got? What should you be doing in the time that you do have left? All these questions have got you thinking, that you would like to explore your spirituality a bit more. So you bought some crystals and a pack of tarot cards; you even went to see a Medium who mentioned something about going on a journey. You really think there might be something in it. You have never been religious, but you’re thinking about the afterlife and wondering what happens next. Last week you watched a TV programme about Buddhist monks living in monasteries high in the mountains of Nepal. It looked so serene, and those monks really seemed to have got it sussed. Now you have your house up for sale and all your stuff on eBay and have bought a one-way ticket to Kathmandu.
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Get a tattoo, a Mohican hairstyle, and wear a leather catsuit
You are feeling old and boring, what happened to that edgy, wild and carefree girl you used to be? When did you start to turn into your mother? You start to panic, you don’t feel old, you still feel like you did when you were a teenager. You remember that teenager, she always wanted to be a punk, a real rebel. They looked so cool, all scowls and attitude, but your mum wouldn’t let you dye your hair, and you hadn’t really got the nerve for it anyway. But now you can do what you want, there is no one to tell you that you can’t have a Mohican, get that snake tattoo on your back, or buy that leather catsuit that looked so great on Suzi Quatro in the ’70s.
Have a facelift
When you look in the mirror you don’t recognise the woman looking back at you. Where did all those wrinkles come from and what happened to your chin? You feel invisible, no one wolf whistles anymore (ok, it really irritated you, but at least you existed!) there are no admiring glances or lame chat-up lines when you are out with the girls; instead, you are ignored at the bar and nobody even seems to notice you are there. Your youth has suddenly disappeared. You are now middle-aged! Oh, the horror! Youth is truly wasted on the young. If only you had your chance again. Then you get an idea. How about a facelift? A bit of a nip and tuck here and there won’t do any harm, just a little bit, nothing too noticeable. Ok, maybe your neck is a bit loose, and your boobs could do with a bit of a lift too. Just this one time, and just enough to give you back your confidence.
Take up extreme sports
You are worried that life is passing you by. The things you used to do when you were young on the spur of the moment just don’t happen anymore. You can’t remember the last time you did anything impetuous or even vaguely exciting. Eating a Chinese takeaway with a bottle of Indian beer while watching a Swedish crime drama is about as thrilling as it gets. When you were younger you thought nothing of packing a few things in the car and going camping for the weekend, you even went canoeing once or twice with an ex. Now you want to do something wild, unpredictable, and exciting. You read an article in the paper about how popular sports like hang gliding, free climbing and wild swimming are and fancy doing something daring. That all seems a bit tame for you. What you would really like to do is crocodile bungee jumping. Now that sounds like fun. You’ve done bungee jumping off a crane before, well you did 20 years ago anyway, so how hard can it be?
Do any of these ring a bell?
Well, hold on before you take any action. Read my Blog on ‘Things you SHOULD do in Midlife’, even if you are having a crisis, or especially before you commit to any of the above.
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