Facing the New Year
Blessings for the new year ahead. Please read our yearly New Year blessings from last year since it still applies for 2021. We are living in times of great change and 2021 will only increase the challenges we face.
The year 2020 can be considered to be spiritual training wheels to prepare us for the future. The year ahead will continue to push challenges our way, and it’s for us to grow against each challenge. While 2020 might seem to have been an anomaly, it wasn’t, and events have been leading up to 2020 for decades. The truth about 2020 is that it represents the first year, where people could no longer ignore climate change, social inequity, and the challenges arising out from many fundamental problems present in modern society.
One challenge that will arise with the new year will be deeper and more profound life crisis moments. This includes seeing deeper midlife crisis moments for many people. Ironically 2020 slowed down midlife crisis events. The COVID quarantines and other drastic changes shifted the way people reacted within their midlife crisis moments. However, after a year of COVID, economic downturns, and social unrest, expect people to let loose in 2021 to find answers for living a better life.
As we transition into this new year. The first step is to pause for a moment and collect oneself. We don’t have room in our lives for panic nor drama. It’s a time to collect ourselves, re-sync with the world around us rather than only reacting to let crisis define a person.
Sixteen years ago, we created a Personal Tao to teach kindness and help people transform. Our goal was to help people live gracefully and be strong enough to improve their lives and the surrounding world. I remember being the first website to promote the concept that the midlife crisis was truly a midlife transformation. By changing the narrative Julie and I have helped thousands of people build better lives.
- Midlife Transformation is a normal biological process; it’s the time to become an elder.
- Midlife Crisis is a social narrative.
Different cultures create different narratives around midlife. Western culture pushes midlife to be about consumption. A person loses control of their change in the modern western midlife crisis narrative.
Compare the Personal Tao narrative of teaching a person to improve their life relative to the western narrative of consumption.
Personal Tao Midlife Transformation Narrative
- Midlife is a natural process. It represents a point when people change their story, re-balancing their relationships, and taking time to be true to their essence.
- Simplify one’s life to make it easier to make changes in your life.
- Change how you work so you don’t burn out. Craft your career to fit your newer life.
- Exercise to get back into shape.
- Become stronger by embracing and pacing yourself to your age.
- Improve one’s diet to feel better and be healthier.
- Play more to rediscover yourself.
- Discover spirit is a process of movement and connection.
- Balance out your needs with the needs of those you love.
- Live a fulfilling life as you are now centered as yourself.
Modern Western Midlife Crisis Narrative
- Ignore the changes happening in your mind, body, and spirit. Over-medicate yourself to stop feeling pain.
- Spend lots of money, on items like a red sports car, to play and feel more alive.
- Have relationships with younger people to feel younger in life.
- Reject your aging process and over push yourself.
- Quit your job before you are ready and throw away everything from your old life.
- Experience spirit by attending a dozen different new churches or new age practices.
- Burn the bridges to your old life so you cannot go back
- Take from others anything you feel is missing in your life.
- Blame anyone and everything that doesn’t agree with you to be the root of your problem
- Start a new family and repeat your old life.
Sadly I am not over exaggerating the western narrative. Modern western culture is a consumer culture that consumes us the people. So the modern western narrative keeps people in the loop of consumption and literally burns out a midlife crisis person.
- The western narrative works really well at keeping the western economic system growing.
- The Personal Tao narrative focuses on helping each person grow.
Having helped people in midlife transformation for 15 years, I can tell you that the narrative is changing. The first major change of narrative started around 2012 when younger people began to internalize the earlier signs of social problems. Now in 2021, we are seeing social restrictions and changes in how people live. The impacts on midlife transformation are actually quite profound as it’s harder for midlifers to go out to experience life during the pandemic. Yet, our homes are becoming like monasteries, where people are being forced to look more inward rather than consume.
If you or someone you love is approaching midlife awakening, take some time to benefit from our culture’s changing narrative. Break free from stories not your own and take control of your own narrative.
Midlife Transformation Tips
Midlife Crisis Timing
Timing is everything in life.
When we start something too soon, we create more problems for ourselves by being underprepared for the process.
When we start something too late, you have to deal with additional problems from rot and decay.
Timing is everything from cooking the best cinnamon roll to when we work through our personal problems. Midlife is no different in this regard. When we get the timing wrong our midlife process becomes a midlife crisis. When we time it all right, everything comes into alignment, and people asked how the hell did you do the impossible!
When you follow the western narrative, the timing of the midlife process becomes irrelevant as the person forces their process. The more you force your midlife crisis to be a speed base process, the faster everything goes out of control. People want everything to be resolve in a few weeks and under 3 months, which is impossible to do within the natural midlife change process.
Part of timing is to work with the tides of life! When we help people work through a midlife transformation, we work with the unique situations and flows a person has in play around them in life. It’s important to consider all the various flows in play for a person. Once you understand the interdependencies in play, it becomes possible to create a graceful path for improving oneself.
It takes 2 years to mature and come into your new self in a midlife transformation. If you understand this truth, you can then use the full two years. Become stronger by not rushing your process! Take the time to improve your life.
Aging is a crazy process. Yet we face aging while trying to ignore it, only for it to catch up to you to slap you around at key points in your life.
Midlife is such a point where aging catches up to a person. You look in the mirror and you don’t recognize the older person looking back at you.
You are young and life is long and there is time to kill today
And then one day you find ten years have got behind you
No one told you when to run, you missed the starting gun
And you run, and you run to catch up with the sun, but it’s sinking
Racing around to come up behind you again
The sun is the same in a relative way, but you’re older
Shorter of breath, and one day closer to death
– Pink Floyd Song: Time
Here is the truth; it’s possible to change how you perceive time and your age. Yes, I do admit being close to 60, at one level aging does suck. Yet on another level, by taking care of myself, by changing my perceptions, I have also deepened and expanded my life in a manner I wouldn’t give up either.
Western culture teaches a person they are at the halfway point of life and to push extra hard to be young again. You only have a handful of years to make the most of life. Ironically the harder you push, the faster you age, hurt yourself and create additional problems to fix in life.
Taoism teaches midlife is the start of the 2nd third of life. That we pace ourselves and then for 40 years we are at the peak of our life. By pacing ourselves, we don’t damage ourselves, and we can keep growing in life.
Additionally, with dragon fire meditation and pausing techniques, it becomes possible to expand your sense of awareness. While time may feel it’s going faster as you get older, it’s possible to soak into it and slow down how you experience it for a fuller life.
Pushing and resisting aging tends to break a person. If you work with your aging, it opens up into a more amazing process.