The second half of life starts with a transition
Any of these life events happen to you yet? – end of a marriage, loss of a job or business, death of a partner, an illness, or retirement? Some element of your identity is gone – you are not a husband or wife, a job title, or the vibrant active person you were before.
Psychologist James Hollis calls this the second half of life, and it’s a developmental opportunity.
People in the second half of life are going back to themselves. But where did they get lost? Where everyone does – unwittingly making choices that did not honour themselves. Choosing security, pleasing other people (including parents who may be long gone), following the crowd – name it and it emerges as a factor in what has held people back from themselves.
Now they are discovering ways to make a difference. It’s called generativity — a level of concern beyond yourself and family that develops especially during middle age; a need to nurture and guide younger people and contribute to the next generation. Thank you, psychologist Erik Erikson.
The second half of life is a call to get from breakdown to breakthrough. And it leads to lives with a strong sense of purpose and filled with meaningful.
Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash