Turning 40 series – where I start to accept I am middle aged

Yes! This is a breakthrough! I’ve actually started referring to myself as being middle aged without breaking into tears/a cold sweat/shivers.

I mean technically I am 39. I may live beyond 78 but I may not. So technically I am middle aged . It’s a fact. So why has it been so so hard for me to accept and come to terms with? It’s just a term, a couple of words. Why did I get myself all in a spin about it?

Well before I ponder that, I’m not alone. The Office for National Statistics in the UK reports that 40- to 59-year-olds are the most anxious age group. At 39 I’m headlong hurtling into statisticsville. So to identify whether I am likely to be the owner of a full on midlife crisis, I have found an article on the 40 signs of a midlife crisis ( must be true then) to identify if I am full on mid life crisis ready.

The top 40 signs of having a midlife crisis

1 Desiring a simpler life – Uh oh number one and I’m not going well. I started wanting a simpler life about five years ago. So I hit number one like a head on collision. ✅

2 Still going to music festivals like Glastonbury –Well I went to my first ever festival aged 36, we were on the waiting list for Kendal Calling and we’ve talked about going to  Deer Shed festival next year so tick that box again. ✅

3 Start looking up old boyfriends or girlfriends on Facebook – here’s one I’m not guilty of. Phew….I was starting to worry. Quite honestly I don’t care what they’re up to although there’s a teensy weensy part of me that hopes the horrible ones got their comeuppance. ❎

4 Realise you will never be able to pay off your mortgage – thanks to simple living (number 1 contradicting number 4 here) we should be OK on this one but we live in a little house and if we’d gone large, I would not be so confident ❎

5 Joining Twitter so your bosses think you ‘get’ digital – well I’m a Tweeter alright but not for work, only for the mindful hub (@mindfulhubuk in case you’re interested) so maybe half a point?❎

6 Excessively reminisce about your childhood – Guilty. Guilty. Guilty. Button Moon, no technology, phones as big as bricks in our student days, spaghetti hoops, penny sweets.  Those were the days…✅

7 Take no pleasure in your friends’ successes – Aw sure I do. That would just make me a shit and not a very good friend. Bring on success for the friends. (Noting that success to me is not a massive house with a massive mortgage or a massive car with a massive leasing payment). ❎

8 Splashing out on an expensive bicycle – aha I hate cycling. Ask my wife about the time we tried to ride a tandem. No mid life crisis to see here obvs. ❎

9 Sudden desire to play an instrument – Aged 34 I borrowed  guitar off my Dad with the aim of becoming the next Meatloaf. Needless to say I’m not…big tick ✅

10 Fret over thinning hair – hell yes. It is definitely getting thinner. Cue me trying to thicken it up with hair products. Definitely a minimalist fail too on this one ✅

11 Take up a new hobby – had to think  about this one. Not recently but never say never ❎

12 Want to make the world a better place – Oh yes but this is nothing new. I was the kid at school who put up posters on school notice boards about animal testing and laboratory animals. I was the early adopter vegetarian aged 13. I’ve always wanted to make the world a better place, I just have a more jaded view now of whether others want to do the same ✅

13 Longingly look at old pictures of yourself – I’m  not sure I  even know where the old old ones are.  Thanks to the power of Facebook we are all enshrined in our youth, but I don’t have the time to trawl through them all anyway!❎

14 Dread calls at unexpected times from your parents (fearing the worst) – now my Mum calls me more from her mobile not so much but when phone calls were rare always

15 Go to reunion tours of your favourite bands from the 70s and 80s – No, No and thrice no. Gary Barlow and co (90s I before a dear reader writes in)  may have ripened in their mid life but kajagoogoo and Black lace not so much ❎

16 Switch from Radio 2 to indie stations like 6 Music – I’m starting to think I went through a mid life crisis early doors. I switched to Capital (for those who don’t know what this is it’s an urban radio station) a few years ago but now firmly back to Radio 4 and our local radio station  ❎

17 Revisit holiday destinations you went to as a child – difficult as we actually live near where we went on holiday. My parents moved up to Yorkshire  where we’d been holidaying for years as kids, and so I can’t really avoid it but not for reminiscence sake ❎

18 Cannot envisage a time when you will be able to afford to retire – Me and at least half the country ✅

19 Read obituaries in the newspapers with far greater interest — and always check how people die – I have definitely taken a greater preoccupation with death. See my post on my phobia here

20 Obsessively compare your appearance with others the same age – It’s so hard to tell these days what age women are that I can’t even tell if they are a comparison❎

21 Start dyeing your hair when it goes grey– Been doing that since at least 30 ❎

22 Stop telling people your age – When they start guessing I’m older than I am I will.  Until then guess away (and make sure you knock at least three years off) ✅

23 Dream about being able to quit work but know that you’ll Just never be able to afford to – Only every day ✅

24 Start taking vitamin pills – Herbs count? If so yes yes yes and probiotics✅

25 Worry about being worse off in your retirement than your parents – I don’t have to worry. I know I will be!✅

26 Want to change your friends but don’t meet anyone new that you like – Nah I like friends. Not sure I meet that many people often I want to call a true friend now though. A  bit 50/50 on this one ✅❎

27 Think about quitting your Job and buying a bed & breakfast or a pub – Does a mobile coffee van count? ✅

28 Flirt embarrassingly with people 20 years your Junior –  I don’t flirt. I don’t think I’d even notice if someone was flirting with me ❎

29 Look up your medical symptoms on the internet – Oh yes, every ache and every pain. NHS Symptom checker is the equivalent  of  that medical dictionary your Nan used to have. NEVER look up your  symptoms.  You’ll always end up with a life threatening disease even when you just have heartburn. Take me from me one who’s been there ✅

30 Start thinking about going to church but never act on it- Nope I was put off enough by Sunday School ❎

31 Always note when politicians or business leaders are younger than you – I notice when they’re talking crap? Does that count? ❎

32 Contemplate having a hair transplant or plastic surgery- Despite all the struggles I have with accepting myself and with self love I can honestly say I feel we’re born with our bodies, and it’s our job to learn to love them not change them through surgery ❎

33 Take out a direct debit for a charity – Definitely thinking my 30s was a mid life crisis.Had one then, but at the moment finances dictate a tightening of the belt ❎

34 Can’t sleep because of work worries – Yep, although meditation helps with this ✅

35 Hangovers get worse and last more than a day on occasions – One of the biggest reasons I don’t drink much anymore. Again another early 30s realisation✅

36 Constantly compare your career success with your friends – If I did this I’d hold my head in my hands. So I don’t❎

37 Worry about a younger person taking your Job – They’re welcome to it!❎

38 Take up triathlons or another extreme sport – I did have visions of running a 10k. Then I tried running. Then I stopped❎

39 Find that you are very easily distracted – Always but that’s nothing new. I’m always easily distracted✅

40 Realise that the only time you read books is when you are on holiday – I find it harder to get time to read a book now but I still make time.❎

So the final result is I could well have been having an undetected mid life crisis in my mid 30s. This is a relief. I’ve ticked 19 and a half out of 40.  Inconclusive. I can sleep easy knowing I have a way to go before I can be called out on a mid life crisis!

Did you tick lots of these? Check out this article on how to survive a mid life crisis. In all honesty this was just a bit of fun, but it is good to know I am not a walking talking stereotype completely all the same. Are you going through a mid life crisis at the moment? Even a mid life moment which is what I’m calling my moments of worry before turning 40? Let me know what you’re doing to cope with it?