fbpx

The Mid Career Crisis

Many of the women I work with are in their early 40’s and are questioning their career. They have achieved a great deal of success but are now agonising over how come they don’t feel more delighted and excited given that they have achieved all they planned as they danced into the workforce all those years, filled with energy and ambition. Somehow their success feels hollow and they are left questioning. “Is this it?”

Jobs that brought pride, challenge and intense satisfaction, are no longer fulfilling or even mildly attractive!

For many it is a time for career transition born out of a natural movement towards considering the meaning of life, a review of values and questioning whether the career they have built is actually the career that they want.

Something seems to happen for us women in our 40’s. What we so desperately wanted in out twenties and thirties doesn’t seem to be what we want now. What once was in perfect alignment with who we were, is no longer. Our priorities have shifted, our values changed and we as people have grown.

This idea resonates with me … a lot. Where once I wanted job security, opportunity for career growth and a clear pathway towards more responsibility … now, what matters most to me are flexibility, job satisfaction and doing something truly meaningful.

Over time our personal values gradually shift, influenced by life’s experiences such marriages, children, bereavement, divorce, illness, redundancy and personal achievements and growth. The shift is slow and gradual. It goes unnoticed and over time the gap between our goals and what we now value most in our lives keeps widening until suddenly somewhere around midlife we are confronted with a mismatch between the two.

It is confusing, unsettling and leaves many craving for more meaning and fulfillment from their career. 

Too often I see women settling for the status quo, wishing and hoping that things will change, but they never do. Perhaps it is the fear of change, but more often than not I believe most stay put because they haven’t yet figured out their plan “B”.

Coming up with a plan “B” can be seen as confronting and overwhelming…. Or it can be seen as an exciting fresh start. You get to choose! Given that you have about 20 more years of employment ahead of you… lets choose to see this as an exciting time of transition, a second chance, a joyous new beginning.

You may be surprised to learn that when researchers asked people over 65 to pick an age they would most like to return to, most chose their 40’s. While stress reaches a high point in middle age, so does our confidence in our abilities. So let’s make the most of this time and make these years some of our happiest and most rewarding.

Here are some things to think about if you are heading towards a mid career crisis.

  1. If you could wave a magic wand and create the next phase of your career just the way you want, what would you include? Think about what motivates and energises you.
  1. What do you value most (eg: time with your family, personal growth, health and wellbeing, being seen as a leader in your field etc) Consider how your career and life choices reflect your values and if there is a mismatch how you can address that.
  1. What are the parts of your current role that you enjoy? Are there ways that you can incorporate more of this into your everyday?
  1. What have you dreamed of doing … but never had the courage to give a go to? Ask yourself; if not now, when?
  1. Imagine exploring and creating a lifestyle that meets your needs then thinking about how work fits around this.
  1. What stories are you telling yourself that are standing between you and the next phase of your career?
  1. How would you feel if nothing was to have changed… one year from now?

So if you recognise that perhaps you are heading towards a “mid career crisis” then the first place to start, is to look upon this time in a positive light. See this time as a golden opportunity to reassess where you have come from, where you are now and where you could go next.

Is time to invest some time into you and take some time out to create the next phase of your career?

NEXT STEPS?

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Rock Your Career Post Lockdown

Over recent weeks I’ve been reflecting on how much the professional landscape has changed since March 2020. The way we work, where we work and what we work on, has in many ways changed forever.
And right now, we are transitioning to yet another new phase of uncertainty and change as we move towards opening up and “living with COVID.”

Jane Benston

What are you waiting for?

Every day I speak to women who are waiting.
They are waiting to feel smart enough, good enough, old enough or for someone to notice their talent or how hard they are working.
It shouldn’t surprise me… because I remember a time when I was waiting to feel ready for the next step in my career. I had no idea why I was waiting or what being ready would look like or feel like… but I was waiting.

Jane Benston

Beautiful thinking business woman isolated white background

Have you forgotten to check in…

We are intuitive beings. We have an inner compass, that when given the chance, can guide us in the decisions we make and the direction we take. When we trust our intuition and take action based on its guidance, it will faithfully do it’s best to support us.

Jane Benston