Stages of a Mid Life Crisis

Hi, this is Kira with another video on midlife crisis. If you need more resources on this, you can check out the playlist. Also, if you really need help with this, there will be links in the description below where you can get in touch with me if you need to talk about this.

So, midlife crisis is a process and there are definite stages in it that you go through. And sometimes, you know, you don’t go perfectly from one step to another, but the overall process, you do transition from stage to stage. And partly, it is this process that’s how you can tell if you are having a midlife crisis rather than just some mental and emotional challenges that are specific to a different issue. Very often they look the same, but traditional treatments will not give lasting relief on midlife crisis. So, you know, check out the video, and you can make just you know, decision when you hear what the stages are which one applies to you. So let’s get into it.

What are the stages of a midlife crisis? There are six.

The first stage is dissatisfaction for no apparent reason. And this is one of the things that I think is one of the key things. You may not even recognize it in the first stage, but if you can, it’s very helpful because then you’re not struggling and trying, wasting time trying all these things that aren’t gonna work. You may have high level of success, you may look you know, have achieved a lot of things that you want to achieve, or your life might be just kind of business as usual with some things going well and some things not going well, but the key difference is that there’s a sense of dissatisfaction that’s not about anything in particular. And a lot of people get lost in this stage because they start, “Oh, I’m dissatisfied.”

So it has to be about a particular thing in a particular issue and if I just find the right issue and change that then everything is going to be fine. That does not work with a midlife crisis. So that’s one of the key things like you may feel I’m you know not happy with my career or my job. If you look for other options and address that you’ll feel relief from that, that’s not a midlife crisis. You may feel dissatisfaction in a relationship, you make changes for that relationship and you feel better in it and it lasts. Then those are kind of issue specific things. A midlife crisis is a general dissatisfaction or you may be dissatisfied with multiple areas in your life at the same time. And if you’ve been going from issue to issue and saying well maybe it’s this and maybe it’s this and maybe it’s this and you try to make changes in all those different areas but you still feel the dissatisfaction chances are you’re dealing with a man in crisis. So that brings me to the second point. So the first point is dissatisfaction for no discernible or no specific reason.

Second point is superficial things just don’t work. And I’m not saying that changing your job or your career or dealing with something that isn’t working in a relationship isn’t important or valuable. What I’m saying is that things that trying to change things on the outside don’t work and that’s kind of a more superficial thing. So the thing we’re dealing with a midlife crisis is you need to do go inside and do deep work on you. And if you try to do superficial things and you know sometimes people make a whole bunch of changes. Sometimes people kind of act out in this stage. They maybe think, “Oh, if I buy some new stuff or if I get in great shape or going and you diet or move to a new place or buy a new car.

You know make a whole bunch of changes sometimes people kind of act out in this stage. They maybe think, “Oh, if I buy some new stuff or if I get in great shape, or going and you diet or move to a new place, or buy a new car,” or you know there’s all kinds of different ways that people try to deal with this. They just don’t bring life-lasting relief, even though they might be healthy things to do, or even though they might or they could be the opposite. Sometimes people really act out in the stage. They start partying a lot. They start with addictions of different kinds. Maybe people take up smoking that they never really had before, maybe drugs, or try to manipulate their energy with food or excessive exercise. There’s a whole bunch of ways that we can act out, and sometimes it’s you know, being not nice to the people around you, taking it out on the people around you. So, there’s many ways that you can deal with this whether in a positive or a negative way, but they won’t work. They just don’t work.

The third stage is when you’ve done enough of this, and for some people, they don’t need to do a lot or any of that, but some people need to do a lot of it. You get to the point where you start to question everything and you start looking inside yourself and saying, “Why is this thing in my life? Why am I doing this? What is this thing? Why do I keep behaving this way? Why do I keep making a certain kind of decision? Why isn’t A, B, C, D, or E working? Why am I in this relationship? Why do I have this job? Why am I letting people treat me a certain way? Why am I treating other people a certain way?” There can be so many different ways that it looks, but the theme is that you start to question. You start to question yourself and you start looking inside, which is the first step of starting to deal with it.

The fourth step is you don’t like what you see, on some degree. Now, this could be you don’t like what you see inside of you. It can also be that you’re starting to not like what you see outside of you, even though in the past, these were things that brought you a lot of pleasure, a lot of enjoyment, and satisfaction. And they’re not even to say that those things are wrong. It’s just that the answers aren’t there. So you may look around you and say, “Why am I in this peer group? Why do I do this certain thing? Why do I go to these certain places? Why do you know? Why am I in this marriage? Why am I acting a certain way as a parent or as a member of my family? Why do I have this job? Why did I start X, Y, Z? Why am I doing this kind of creative work?” So you start asking yourself the questions, and they start sort of, you know, the more concrete level. And then most of the time, if you’re really doing the work, the questions will get deeper and deeper and deeper and you’ll get into more and more fundamental layers. Like, “Who am I? Who do I want to be in the world? And what are the parts of myself that I’m avoiding? What are the parts that I really don’t like about myself?” And now you’re really starting to get to the heart of the matter.

And that’s when step number five starts. When you start going through these layers, you get to doing deep inner work, and you start to recognize mental and emotional patterns that you’ve had.

Sometimes they may have served you really well in the past. Like we do things and we have habits because at some point in time they work. But one of the things with a midlife crisis is, it won’t let you get away with this anymore. So it’s like if you broke your ankle and you needed to get a cast and then maybe a cane or crutches, it won’t. Midlife crisis will force you to heal to the point where you’ve done all the physio, that you can walk again without any help, but not just walk. That you can run, even if you’ve never been able to run before, you will be able to run and run fast. That’s what this part is about, that’s what the deep inner work is about. You need to let go of the things that have helped you and I’m gonna use the word “enabled” you to get to this point. They could be all kinds of different symptoms on the outside, but you have to go inside and find the fundamental core and cause and heal them. Healing means that they don’t exist anymore; they’re not there.

This brings us to step number six: transformation beyond your imagination. Think of a butterfly, it starts out as a caterpillar and becomes a butterfly, something totally new. The first five stages are like going into the cocoon and becoming the chrysalis, and then the chrysalis emerging as the butterfly. When you come out the other side of this, you will still be you, but you’ll be a version of you that you couldn’t even have dreamt existed when you started. And it will be incredible. You will have a sense of presence, a sense of authenticity. You have this sense, this feeling of “I am who I really am,” and you don’t need to fake it for anyone, anywhere, anytime anymore.

You are who you are, and you have a deep sense of love and enjoyment in the you that you uncovered, this diamond that you’ve uncovered beneath all the dirt. At this point, you may go back to old things that you’ve done before and enjoy them in a new way and in a very authentic way. Or you may think, “I know there may be areas of my life that I’m done with, bring on the new.” Or you may find that all of your life wants to be new, and the outcome you can’t really predict at the beginning. It’s only once you go through the deep, deep, transformative work that you can pick and choose the things that are really authentic and really belong to you. So whatever is in your life at this time will be really authentic and will really reflect the amazing, incredible, beautiful being that you are.

So those are the six stages. I’ll just review them again. The first stage is dissatisfaction with no real reason, the second one is superficial things don’t help, like being positive or making changes won’t help. Step number three is you question everything. Step number four, you may begin to not like what you see on the outside, as well as on the inside. This is a sign that you are starting to question and examine your habits and patterns. In the fifth stage, you will start to do deep inner work, looking at the fundamental core and cause of your dissatisfaction and working to heal them. Finally, in the sixth stage, you will experience a transformation beyond your imagination, becoming a new version of yourself and having a deep sense of authenticity and presence. If you need help or have any questions, you can reach out to the author through the links provided.

The text above was derived (in part or whole) from the video transcript and formatted for your reading enjoyment.
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Channel name: The Eagle Institute