The Middle Passage by James Hollis

by midlifecrisisqueen on September 19, 2012

I have been reading the most important book I have ever read about midlife emotional/psychological development this week!

But before you all run purchase a copy, you should know that it is written by a Jungian psychoanalyst, so it may be a little technical for some of you.  It is written like a psychology textbook, and priced accordingly.  Still, after reading so many books about what happens to us in midlife, I found a wonderful sense of validation in this slim volume!

Ever since I began to experience so much change in my own life back in 2000 at age 45, I have been talking about these changes with whomever I met.  Then in 2005 I started writing about the midlife transition and reading everything I could get my hands on, because I knew there was some sort of psychological seismic shift going on inside of me.

Unfortunately, most of the popular literature on this topic makes fun of the healthy, natural emotional changes brought on by midlife, marginalizing those of us who KNOW an essential chapter in our own adult development is happening within.

The Middle Passage: From Misery to Meaning in Midlife  is different.  This book validated every stage of midlife development I have experienced personally, and explained why I was called to experience such chaos in my life.  It validated my experience of the transition from breakdown to breakthrough, and explained the ultimate rewards of this individuating process.  Most importantly, it normalized this essential rite of passage for me.

If more of us understood the purpose of these personal changes and that they represent a new and important stage of personal growth, not a mistake or failure on our part, perhaps more of us would embrace midlife change, instead of avoiding it or delaying it indefinitely.

My plan is to translate and interpret the many things I’ve learned from reading all the latest midlife psychological literature, into a book for the layman on the many amazing rewards to be found in developing your sense of self in midlife!  Be patient, it’s coming soon!

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