Collage of six picture of peoples journey from midlife crisis to vitality and thriving.

Finding the way from a midlife crisis

Navigating from a life-challenging period of depression and suicidal thoughts to purpose and vitality—strategies to help.

My father’s surprising revelations.

When I was a teenager, my father shared with me, as we were walking one day, that he was amazed at an encounter earlier that day with a friend of his who had come to him for support and guidance. The friend told him he had been having suicidal thoughts and was very upset with what he thought were significant losses and challenges in his life. I don’t know what my father told him, but his friend felt relieved and left in an improved mental state, feeling that he had been listened to, supported, and unburdened by his deepest worries and fears.

What my father told me left me surprised. I felt special that my father would share his unimaginable and personal stuff with me. He, too, until his friend had unburdened himself, felt hopeless with downward turns in his business and other losses.

My father, surprisingly, like his friend, had had suicidal thoughts that were part of some depression, doom, and gloom he was feeling. With a bit of humor, my father told me he was so taken aback by his friend’s complaints, which he thought were frivolous, to be so upset over when compared to what burdened my father’s mind. Whatever took place with my dad’s encounter with his friend, jolted him back to clear reality and sensibility.

My dad saw how he had gotten caught up in negative feelings, thoughts, and emotions, out of context with the broader picture of what happened, and had underappreciated all the positive possibilities and meaningful things readily available to him. He now realized how his isolated thinking and worry, dragged him down into the abyss of a felt place of no return. My father’s new clarification was a blessing in getting things back into perspective. Perhaps he was sharing his close call and learning to begin my education for my journey into adulthood and its challenges.

The tragedy of depression and suicide

I had two relatives who, under entirely different circumstances, died from suicide. Also, several friends have lost a parent, sibling, or child to suicide. In my professional career as a psychiatrist and internist, I have been present when people struggled to survive their grief and emotional pain after an unanticipated loss. The occurrences were after the suicide of a loved one or a significant other.

A valued education encounter with the founder of the American Association of Suicidology.

I was fortunate to take courses with Dr. Edwin S. Shneidman at UCLA while doing my graduate work in Preventive Medicine. Shneidman was an American clinical psychologist who studied suicide and its prevention. In 1958, with colleagues, he founded the Los Angeles Suicide Prevention Center, where research was done on suicide that led to the development of a crisis and treatment center to prevent deaths. Shneidman founded the American Association of Suicidology and a journal for suicide studies, Suicide, and Life-Threatening Behavior, and was the Professor of Thanatology at the University of California for many years. Shneidman published twenty books on suicide and its prevention. Wikipedia –

Melissa Howard is a contributing writer who provided the accompanying article below.

She is a talented writer who advocates for suicide prevention. After losing her younger brother to suicide, she felt compelled to create the website Stop Suicide

Melissa is dedicated to helping prevent suicides and offering alternative ways to adapt to life challenges or losses. When possible, being informed and aware is to be available for suicide prevention or intervention.

By providing helpful resources and articles on her website, Melissa hopes to build a lifeline of information. She attended school at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, and works as an executive assistant. Her dedicated work is a valuable resource to anyone faced with life crises that experience depression and suicidal thinking.

The article below was published originally at

“Rediscovering Life’s Brilliance: Navigating a Midlife Crisis with Purpose”

by Melissa Howard

During a midlife crisis, finding inspiration and positivity might seem like a daunting task. But fear not because we’ve compiled key points to help you reignite your passion for life. Let’s embark on this transformative journey together.

Prioritize Your Well-being

Start by taking steps to improve your health. This includes regular exercise, a balanced diet, and sufficient sleep. A healthier body often leads to a clearer mind. When you feel physically well, you’re better equipped to face the challenges that come with midlife transitions. Prioritizing your well-being is the first step towards rediscovering positivity.

Explore New Places

Venture beyond your comfort zone. Travel broadens your horizons and sparks new perspectives and experiences that can rejuvenate your spirit. Exploring new places, cultures, and cuisines can reignite your sense of wonder and adventure. So, pack your bags and embark on a journey to rediscover the world and yourself.

Give Back Through Volunteering

Find fulfillment by contributing to your community or a cause close to your heart. Volunteering benefits others and brings a sense of purpose to your life. The act of giving back can be incredibly rewarding, helping you find inspiration in the positive impact you make on the lives of others. It’s a win-win situation that can lift your spirits during a midlife crisis.

Overcome Substance Use Disorders

When facing a substance use disorder, seeking assistance demonstrates great courage. Taking this step is instrumental in the journey toward healing and reconstructing your life. By directly confronting addiction, you open the door to a fresh beginning, enabling you to regain command of your life and uncover newfound positivity along the path to recovery. To find treatment, research in-state addiction treatment options, paying special attention to a facility’s staff, accreditations, and patient reviews. Many centers accept health insurance, and there are also government-run facilities as well.

Embrace Gratitude Daily

Practice gratitude daily to shift your focus from what’s lacking to what you have. A thankful heart is a gateway to positivity and contentment. Start each day by acknowledging the things you’re grateful for, whether it’s your health, family, or the simple joys of life. Cultivating this habit can significantly boost your outlook during a midlife crisis.

Pursue Entrepreneurship

Consider embarking on a career change through entrepreneurship by launching your own business. Entrepreneurship provides an avenue to pursue your passions and establish something meaningful. Through this endeavor, you can harness your creative prowess and visionary ideas to reignite your professional life, infusing it with a fresh sense of purpose. If you’re starting a business, craft an engaging and imaginative text logo using online templates to leave a lasting impact on your audience.

Set Work-Life Boundaries

Maintain a healthy work-life balance. Setting boundaries ensures you have time for personal growth and relationships, fostering a sense of well-being. In the hustle and bustle of midlife responsibilities, carving out moments for yourself and your loved ones is essential. Balancing your professional and personal life can lead to a more fulfilling and inspired existence.

Disconnect from Technology

Take breaks from the digital world. Unplugging allows you to reconnect with yourself and the real world, fostering inspiration and mindfulness. In today’s hyper-connected society, constant notifications and distractions make it easy to get overwhelmed. Stepping away from screens and devices can provide clarity and a renewed sense of purpose.

During a midlife crisis, finding inspiration and positivity is not just a possibility but a powerful opportunity for personal growth. By following these key points, you can navigate this phase with purpose, rekindling the brilliance of life that may have dimmed over the years. Remember, your journey toward positivity starts with a single step. Embrace these strategies, prioritize your well-being, find addiction treatment, explore new horizons, and give back to the community. Overcoming challenges and setbacks is part of life’s journey, but with determination and a positive mindset, you can emerge from your midlife crisis stronger and more inspired than ever. So, seize this moment to rediscover life’s brilliance and make the most of the years ahead.

Thanks to Melissa for her valuable and dedicated advocacy, website, and for providing this article for Mind Wise readers published originally at:

Explore the comprehensive resources and holistic approach to mental health at and Mind Wise Dr. Parks Substack newsletter for a path toward health and well-being.

Melissa Howard’s prior contributed article to the website:

The caption to the featured photo: Finding the way from midlife crisis – by RRP design with Canva & stock photos

depression, holistic therapies, integrative approaches, Integrative Psychiatry, suicide, trauma


 RECEIVE A FREE COPY OF my BOOK, Covid-19/Mental Health Crises, and my Mind Wise newsletters, and new articles

See What Dr. Parks' Patients Think...

  • When I came down with Stage III cancer shortly after and was extremely depressed and anxious about my diagnosis, he prescribed me the right medications to help me. He sent me to a diet/ herbalist/ acupuncturist specializing in cancer. I am a survivor today.


  • In the fifteen years, we have had the privilege of knowing Dr. Ron Parks, his integrity, knowledge, and humanity have shown in both his professional and personal interactions.

    -Lino Stanchich

Get In Touch

*We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.

Amazon Health and personal care bestsellers


By using this blog site, viewers acknowledge that they have read, accept and understand the following terms and conditions: This blog site provides information only, not medical or mental health advice. It is the User’s responsibility to direct personal medical or mental health questions to their primary care provider and specialty physicians. This blog site is not intended to do or provide medical advice or consultation. You are advised to seek the advice of your personal physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or problem.

The information and statements contained in this blog site are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease or to replace the recommendations or advice given to you by your primary or direct care providers. The contents of this website or additional comments are for informational purposes only and are not intended to be a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment provided by professional care givers who have seen you and with whom you have directly worked. Your reliance on any information provided by Dr. Parks, content providers, or comment contributors is solely at your own discretion. You are advised not to disregard medical advice from your primary or direct care providers, or delay seeking medical advice or treatment because of information contained in this website.

This blog site and its materials are the intellectual property of Dr. Parks. Using this material without written permission is prohibited. There is no implied warranty to readers, since health information benefits everyone in their own unique way. Anyone viewing this blog site ( agrees to hold harmless and indemnify Dr. Parks regarding any information provided from this website and any ancillary or collateral information contained in the site or to which referenced is made. There are no representations as to accuracy, completeness, suitability, or validity of any information on this blog site and Dr. Parks will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its use. The views expressed on this website are those of Dr. Parks or other contributors. Views expressed are not to be inferred to be an endorsement from or by any official government, organization or medical establishment. Management of serious mental or physical health problems should remain under the care and guidance of your primary care physicians, specialist or psychiatrists.