It is impossible for a man
to learn what he thinks he already knows
This can lead us to feeling unhappy and at times experience emotions such as anxiety, anger, guilt, hurt, jealousy, shame, envy or possibly depression
Very often, we may:
- be unaware there is a problem
- stick our heads in the sand, or
- keep uncalm and carry on.
Asking for support can help move these emotions to healthier ones which allows us to re-focus on goals to build our joyful moments, positive memories and generally feel happier.
Based on working with other people, as well as personal experiences, I believe our adult lives have distinct phases. Moving between these, where we have little familiarity or knowledge, can present big challenges to us achieving our goals. Also, within each phase, there are also specific challenges we face to a lesser or greater extent in our lives.
How many of these sound familiar?
Becoming a young adult
Challenges around: finding work or a college, being away from home, forming new friendships and relationships, fitting in, loneliness, fear of judgement, expectations to perform, achieving work/play balance, managing finances, peer pressure for health, body image and achievements, positive and negative effects of social media, perhaps discrimination and bullying
Experiencing working life
Challenges around: finding a vocation and job, forming work relationships, starting to perform, continuing to perform, achieving, excelling, pushing oneself, ambition, keeping motivated, creating work/ life balance, avoiding burnout, managing stress and insecurity, adapting to constant change, managing colleagues, not being recognised and rewarded, receiving negative feedback, feeling under-appreciated, managing disappointment, being discriminated against or bullied, finding new opportunities, being made redundant, disillusionment with work, changing career one or more times, finding a new job, learning new skills.
Developing our personal lives
Challenges around: loneliness, isolation, finding a partner, bonding, committing, settling, securing somewhere to live, adjusting, managing conflicts, building consensus and agreement, making ends meet, moving residence, keeping up with peers, the positive (connecting, helping others) and negative effects of social media (comparisons, FOMO), organising holidays, breaking up, divorcing, maybe having to do it all again.
Starting a family (if desired)
Deciding, coping with physical and emotional changes, changed priorities and focus for parents, needing to provide and nurture, educate, create boundaries, keeping safe and secure, balancing work and family life / relationships, managing relatives.
What is the purpose of life, what have I given up, confusion, feeling unsettled, conflicting priorities, assessing achievements, comparisons with others, need to drive oneself less/more, health worries, managing menopause (which has dramatic effects on all sexes).
Feeling the empty nest syndrome
Challenges around: grown up children leaving home, letting go of offspring, refocussing and rekindling with partner now that “project kids” has finished, building financial security for the future, lack of focus, more free time, reassessment of what it’s all about, reconnecting with partner, identifying common hobbies/interests, inability to bridge gap with partner, loneliness, separating, finding love again.
Preparing for, and experiencing, old age
Challenges around: stopping / reducing work, , maintaining physical and mental health, having financial security, staying together, finding common or new activities, supporting ill partners, adjusting to loss of a loved one, new family responsibilities, acceptance of mortality, worries about what will happen to the world.
If you have been experiencing any of these, and perhaps others, and are now feeling disturbed or unhappy, please get in touch. We can find a way through together.