Waking up to the realization that your life lacks purpose.
Waking up to a sense of emptiness and lack of meaning.
Waking up to the understanding that the way you’ve been running (running!) your life all these years appears fruitless.
What’s this life all about? Whose life have I been living?
The things that seemed important for so long, seem superficial and irrelevant.
So… what now?
These moments and transitions from one phase of life to another may feel like crises*, but who said reawakening would be easy?!
This time of questioning, inner emptiness, turmoil, friction and discomfort can be one of the most significant and rewarding transitions of your life, propelling you to an experience of living with more peace, meaning and purpose.
If you so choose.
Or it can propel you deeper into meaninglessness, emptiness and purposelessness…
… if that’s what you choose.
Where does the difference lie?
The first choice would signify the monumental shift from projecting value onto outer objects as sources of and indicators of happiness, success, importance et cetera, to redirecting the focus inward.
That takes courage. It’s a paradigm shift. Others in your sphere might not ‘get it’. Some relationships, work, activities might fall away. It’s a massive ‘letting go’ process.
What we experience externally holds no intrinsic value. It’s value is mere projection:
A hotted up sports car, for example, holds no value or appeal to some, where to others it represents a symbol of success and gives them a loaned sense of confidence. Being crazy busy, constantly on the phone or responding to emails, running between meetings and appointments, holds no value or appeal to some, where to others it symbolizes their importance and value. Feeling desirable to people younger than we are holds no appeal to some, where to others it symbolizes their desirability, attractiveness, worthiness of love.
The ‘thing’ itself holds no intrinsic value. The value comes from our perceptions and projections – from our conditioning.
So, to give ourselves the best opportunity for profound, unconditional happiness, meaning, purpose, true success and fulfilment, let’s rename a midlife crisis a “Midlife Reawakening”. That feels better, doesn’t it? Reawakening to the value we hold just by being, not by having.
Notice the fears pop up, the ‘what if’s’, ‘but how’s’… They will surface. Notice the internal friction as you choose a different way. Redirect your focus inside yourself and… just notice… that the happiness, fulfilment, success are ‘in there’, not ‘out there’.
Reawakening doesn’t need to be as torturous as you may think!
*Psychoanalyst and social scientist, Elliott Jaques, introduced the term ‘midlife crisis’ in 1965, which continues to shape Western understanding and interpretations of life transitions and experiences in middle age. Interestingly, the article in which he originally used the term addressed the death rates of creative geniuses during midlife! - https://pep-web.org/search/document/IJP.046.0502A