Psychological Development Across the Lifespan

Middle Adulthood (40–60)

What emotional changes transpire in middle adulthood?

There is a universally recognized trend in middle adulthood to be calmer, less impulsive, and less emotionally reactive than at younger ages. Middle-aged adults often feel stress, due to the numerous responsibilities they face, but they are relatively free of the existential angst that characterizes earlier periods. Their greater understanding of the world as a whole allows them to put events into perspective. When you can take the long view of a situation, it tends to take the sting out of any particular incident. This reduces emotional volatility. Moreover, middle-aged adults have a larger world view, which allows them to better understand the implications of any given event, to apprecate the possible consequences. This consideration of consequences tempers impulsivity.


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