A recent article in a local magazine talked about midlife crisis in men. As a practitioner of cognitive therapy and a psychologist who has worked with many males going through changes in their life, I view it as a normal phase of life rather than evidence of deep seated problems that needs psychotherapy. Life coaching is a term that better reflects their needs; the opportunity to discuss their concerns and dilemmas with an intelligent, caring and wise professional who will both listen AND provide advise, counsel and direction. Midlife crisis is really a descrepancy between where we believe we ought to be at a stage in our life and the reality of where we are. If a man believes he should have earned enough money to retire comfortably by age 50 and he hasn’t, he may feel inadequate or view himself as a failure. A basic life assumption has been shattered and he needs to re-define success and self-worth. The same would hold true for the male who is divorced one or more times and feels the promise of a long and happy life with a mate hasn’t materialized and very likely will not. Life coaching for midlife crisis focuses on teaching men that they can still find happiness and satisfaction in spite of their disappointments and limitations. Issues may deal with loss, separation, regrets about past choices, concerns about future limitations, etc. In Life Coaching, we work on things individuals can control which enables them to not only feel better but get better! A practical, focused, present centered, life coaching for midlife crisis differs from therapy in that the client is not suffering from severe depression, anxiety or other complications which would make Cognitive Behavior Therapy a better choice.
Life Coaching is Not a licensed profession so it is best to work with a licensed psychologist or other mental health professional with training and experience as a Life Coach.