THE MIDLIFE phase gives us the chance to incorporate into our repertoire the talents and dreams we let slide post-childhood, and to finally express ourselves authentically. It might not take the form that you dreamed about in your youth – I’ll never be Bono, for example – but it can still be deeply satisfying.

At first this seems scary – when you try on new ways of being, you don’t know what will emerge. However, the great thing is that you don’t have to choose and create it all, it’s more about uncovering the raw material that’s already there – the stuff that critical comments by some adult, or teasing by another child, caused you to hide.

The search will have you scratching about in your early childhood talents and preferences. So you liked drawing, and you became a banker. It’s time to fetch those old pencils from the storeroom and start again. It can be a hobby and who knows, perhaps it can become even more.

If the source of your passion not as clear as that, then delve into those things about yourself that you’ve always been ashamed about – think about what’s good and right for you, and not what looks good to others.