Answering the Midlife Wake-up Call

 By: Anne Uemura, Ph.D.
One day an alarm starts to blare in your head. It says, "Wait a minute! This isn't the life I planned. Is that all there is?" You hit "snooze" on that annoying wake-up buzzer again and again but it goes off at so many times:

•÷ your body has betrayed you with strange new ailments,
•÷ your children leave the nest,
•÷ your marriage or lack of one bothers you,
•÷ your aging parents rely on you,
•÷ you're not financially stable,
•÷ your career doesn't exist or isn't satisfying.

Midlife may bring on challenges in every aspect of your life. Is there a way to answer this call without smashing the whole clock to pieces? Is there any reason that you are given such struggles to deal with? Yes. Take a deep breath and relax.

Your wake-up call is about to change from an irritating unrelenting buzz to softly playing music, gently but firmly nudging you down the path toward your best life. The best part is that the picture of "your best life" is completely yours.

•÷ Celebrating the Awakening of the Midlife Mind

One of the amazing laws of the universe is that it tries constantly to keep us in balance. One way the universe performs this function is to send us various messages throughout our lives. When your body starts to experience menopause symptoms like hot flashes, decreased sex drive and insomnia--that is your body telling you to take a look at your nutrition, stress level and exercise.

Your time spent in this midlife season is full of transitions and re-evaluations. You are given an opportunity to look at the life you have created and decide if that is the one you really want. What an amazing gift this can be for those women who choose to embrace this time. You have the choice to view a midlife struggle like menopause as a bother and inconvenience or as a chance to improve and take control of your life. Why not love it instead!

•÷ Finding the Support to Put You on the Right Path to Midlife Success

As women at this midlife transition re-evaluate their current life, they may discover areas of great dissatisfaction with work, family, marriage, health, spirituality, plus overall personal growth and development. Life coaches for midlife women have evolved in response to the need for support during this time of phenomenal growth and change.

In order to make significant, lasting and appropriate changes to your life, many things need to happen. First of all, you need the support of other like-minded women and mentors. In the past wise elders would mentor women in a family or town but we seem to lack this support system in our society. Many women find the elders in their family may not provide the example they are seeking to emulate.

Other resources? Women's peer groups like the Red Hat Society have started to take root. A life coach is a more intimate, trained and focused version of the wise elder. A good life coach should help you gather your talents and resources from your past experiences, build a vision for the future and navigate the obstacles on the path to your goals.

•÷ How to Use Your Midlife Wake-Up Call

Your midlife experience will not be exactly like that of any other woman. Ground your explorations in affirming your uniqueness. Embrace attitudes that will keep you positive. Surround yourself with people and resources that uplift you. Learn how to become empowered by circumstances and appreciate what you can learn rather than feel victimized. Learn to ask questions and discover where your answers are.

That doesn't mean that you shouldn't ever be sad, frustrated or tired on this journey. Rather it means being wise enough to seek out help when you need it. It means rewiring old ways of thinking and acting. It means embracing the years of wisdom and experience you have been accumulating to create your best life for yourself. Finally, answering your midlife wake-up call means acknowledging the full range of power you possess over your thoughts, actions, and life.
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