Suffering A Mid Life Crisis Could Boost Creativity
Experiencing a mid-life crisis is a relatively common event -- with six in ten people aged 40 to 59 stating that they might be going through one.
But a new study suggests that experiencing an emotional upheaval like a mid-life crisis can stir feelings of curiosity and enable better coping mechanisms to deal with problems, writes The Daily Mail.
Popular behaviors linked to a mid-life crisis, including the purchase of sports cars and dating younger members of the opposite sex could stem from a craving for new experiences as the brain searches for an inventive solution.
A team of researchers, led by Dr Oliver Robinson of the University of Greenwich, questioned more than 900 participants aged 20 and over. From the findings, they discovered that 24 per cent of those aged 40 to 59 were "definitely" going through some kind of crisis, with 36 per cent who identified themselves as "maybe" going through a crisis. The study used three factors to define a crisis, including emotional instability, making major life changes and feeling overwhelmed for at least a year, writes The New Zealand Herald.
In a presentation to the British Psychological Society's conference in Nottingham, Dr. Robinson stated that there were two schools of thought: that the crisis needed drug treatment or that the curiosity associated with a mid-life crisis "creates a sense of child-like wonder and excitement at being alive," writes The Daily Mail.
A newfound sense of curiosity meant that those going through a mid life crisis often had more interest in other people and themselves as well as in ideas and the world around them, he added.
Finding oneself in the midst of a crisis was not limited to those in middle age, however - 22 per cent of the group aged 20 to 39 reported themselves as being in crisis, with a further 36 percent identifying as potentially being in a crisis. In comparison, only 14 percent of those aged over 60 identified as being in a crisis.
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