Emotional baggage comes from stumbling through your late 30s and early 40s in a rolling crisis. Problems with your spouse or mate. Power issues at work and in your relationship. Spiritual searching that masks as restlessness. Physical changes that can lead to being put on drugs that you may or may not end up taking the remainder of your life. Physical changes that come with peri-menopause or menopause for some women. Fear of loss of fertility (men and women). Issues around what it is to be your gender and gender roles. Fear of not being a mother/parent (who am I, if I am not a mother to a dependent child?). Realization that you will not live forever. These are some of the situations that arise.
Imagine trying to pack for a journey but filling your suitcase with more and more clothes and shoes because you are afraid you might need this or that thing where you are going? Imagine you put in more and more items. What happens when you try to shut it? It won’t close. Things poke out. The zipper won’t work. You must get rid of some items. You must think about what you really do not need moving forward. This is early midlife.
What emotional baggage can you leave behind and what emotional baggage should you avoid. This is what I work on with life strategy clients between 37-44. Some wisely come to em earlier at 35 or 36 to get a heads up so they can have the best chance to avoid the potholes in the road and have high-speed smooth journeys into the mid-40s. Other’s come to me at 46, 47 because they have had a rough time in their 40s , filled with divorce or remarriage, serious physical issues, mentally distressing changes, feel spiritual loss or don’t know what to do now that they are no longer a parent. They have overflowing emotional suitcases that take intense work to empty so we can repack their suitcases for the real journey ahead when they arrive at full midlife at 50.
Rich, powerful experiences of growth that come from taking advantage of the opportunity of midlife is better than gathering emotional baggage by holding onto past ways of being and doing.
When you reach early midlife you reach a significant turning point in life where you are given the opportunity to release the past and evolve further into your own authentic self. We commonly call this a crisis. However a crisis has two components – chaos AND opportunity. Viewing early midlife as an opportunity is the key to thriving and making it a successful time of life.
Check out this online course to give you better understanding