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November 24, 2011

There comes a day in many a midlife woman’s life when you awake with a sudden jolt to hear the alarm ringing and experience a frantic realisation that things haven’t exactly worked out how you thought they’d work out.  “Is this it then?” you ask, “I’m 47 for heaven’s sake… why didn’t someone wake me up earlier?” (insert age as appropriate!)

You try hard not to become a walking midlife cliché but you find yourself questioning… well, everything – your  work, your relationship, the meaning of life… everything! Suddenly, all you think about – or maybe ‘obsess’ about would be more accurate – is that you’re not where you thought you’d be or where you want to be.

Yes, it’s the midlife wake up call!
Only, it’s like one of those alarms you can’t switch off unless you get out of bed! Try as you might to put it on ‘snooze’, it still manages to keep on making one helluva noise from somewhere deep down in your consciousness. And on top of all that… you’re suddenly very aware that the clock seems to be ticking louder and louder… and you get that pit of the stomach realisation that timime running oute is…you can hardly bear to say it… running out!

Don’t panic
It feels more like an emergency alarm bell than a wake-up call and our first reaction is often to panic and run about screaming ‘get me out of here!’ This is NOT the time for a knee-jerk reaction or quick fix, however tempting! Panic only serves to blinker your vision to the point where it’s hard to see anything other than the walls around you.

But it IS time..
Yes, it IS time to shake things up a bit! It IS time for change. But ‘time’ is the operative word here –  it takes time to reflect before it’s time to do. It IS however, time to start the process of exploration.

Explore and expand
You might well be feeling trapped inside a tunnel where you can’t see any way out. When you feel confined and constricted the first thing to do is to open up your thinking so that you gradually find yourself in a bigger place where new ideas and options become visible. This is your chance to look at the life you have created and decide if it’s the one you really want. 
Look outwards and forwards
Once you’ve reflected and explored and established what you want, THEN it’s time to take purposeful action to make it happen.

I know that it can often feel like a rude awakening but really it’s simply a call waiting to be answered. The thing about wake-up calls is that they don’t go away, do they? We know they just keep getting louder and louder until we HAVE to pay attention and hear what we need to hear and learn the lessons we need to learn. So no more hitting the snooze button ….

Wakey, wakey, it’s time to rise and shine!

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