A midlife crisis

A midlife crisis is often seen as a pivot point of life, where attention shifts from time past to time that is still left. It is usually a period of despair and requires a process of adjustment.

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MORE IDEAS FROM THE ARTICLE

  • The term "midlife crises" was coined in 1965, and reflects the dawning recognition of one's mortality where death becomes a personal matter.
  • According to Elliot Jaques, the key achievement of middle age is to move beyond youthful idealism to a constructive acceptance.
  • Other explanations are that it is when children may be leaving home, when chronic illnesses often make their first appearance, or when workplace demands may be peaking.
When a midlife crisis should appear

Concepts of middle age change as we get older. People aged over 60 recalled their midlife crisis at 53, while those in their 40s dated theirs to 38.

It appears that there are no distinct midlife crises, but rather crises that occur from time to time.

Midlife does not have to be a time of psychological gloom.

  • People become less neurotic and self-conscious from age 41 to 50.
  • Women from ages 43 to 52 tend to become less dependent and self-critical, more confident, responsible and decisive.
  • The more crises people reported the more empathetic they were towards others.

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RELATED IDEAS

The decreasing body functions and ‘wear and tear in men who are in the plateau of midlife, is a normal occurrence and is experienced by everyone in varying degrees. The biological clocks inside us are keeping time for the onset of decline.

Simply put, midlife crisis is real and common.

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IDEAS

Fluid vs. Crystallized intelligence

In the intelligence field, there is a distinction between:

  •  "fluid" intelligence (indexed by tests of abstract reasoning and pattern detection);
  •  "crystallized" intelligence (indexed by measures of vocabulary and general knowledge).

The age-related curve in job satisfaction has been found in more than 50 countries. It affects senior-level executives as well as blue-collar workers, stay-at-home parents, childless couples and single people.

Generally, life satisfaction is high when people are young, it starts to decline in the early 30s and is the lowest between mid-40s and mid-50s. Then it increases again to levels as high as during young adulthood.

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