Interview with Rosi Viljoen and Deb Pasley, Co-Founders of The Midlife Hub

We caught up with Rosi Viljoen and Deb Pasley, Co-Founders of The Midlife Hub, to talk about how they’re making the midlife a positive place to be by inspiring people to take an action-based approach…

Tell us about The Midlife Hub

We really want to help people thrive in their midlives, so we created a space to help them do just that.

For us, knowledge is power. Arming yourself with the facts, knowing what to expect, and understanding what’s possible is absolutely vital. We feature topical content that’s centred around midlife themes, everything from menopause to money matters, work to wellbeing – we’ve got it covered.

We offer a free (no strings attached) Midlife MAP service that helps people think through their midlife needs, and create a midlife plan. So whether people want to tackle big-ticket items like taking a year out to go travelling, maybe go back into education to update their skill set, or take on smaller commitments like eating better, sorting our their finances or taking up resistance training, we can help them make a practical plan that gets them there.

We’ve also brought together a range of midlife related services and events (think yoga teachers, menopause support, nutritionists; career coaches; talking therapists; fitness instructors and financial advisors). All the businesses we feature have passed our 6 point quality check to ensure they are trusted and reliable. Having access to a wide range of trusted local services and information all in once place makes it easier to make informed personalised choices, whatever you are in your midlife journey.

Why did you build The Midlife Hub?

‘Midlife’ isn’t just about one thing. Everyone’s experience is different and there are multiple changes you might expect (anything from changes in your hormonal health; changes in family dynamics, in your physical wellbeing or career goals to name just a few). And it can often reach a ‘crisis’ point before you even realise where you are.

There’s a negative association with reaching your midlife, and this is backed up in statistics. A study from The Office for National Statistics in wellbeing survey in 2018 shows a ‘U shaped’ dip in overall satisfaction with life between the ages of 35 and 55.
We knew there were lots of businesses offering ‘midlife’ support. But people still had to dig around to find support across the different areas of their lives, and we wanted to bring these all together in one easy use space.

For us, it’s all about challenging that social stigma of the midlife crisis or being ‘middle-aged’. We’re on a mission to amplify the conversation in people’s personal and professional lives, so that people can be aware of, prepare for, and embrace this important chapter of their lives.

Who is The Midlife Hub for?

Everyone is welcome. Basically, anyone who’s approaching their midlife, or in their midlife now. And let’s be clear: the average life expectancy in the UK is approx 80 yrs for men, and for women it’s 83*, so statistically when you hit your early 40s you’re already in your midlife!

And this isn’t a bad thing, we need to shrug off the social stigma of a midlife crisis, and look at midlife as a time of opportunity, a time to pause, reflect and take some positive steps to the next phase of your life.

How did you come up with the idea for The Midlife Hub?

We wanted to create something that we felt was missing when we reached our own midlives, because we found information hard to find, and didn’t get the support we needed. Like many people, we only realised how the mental and physical changes that midlife bring were affecting us once we were experiencing our own midlife crises. We both had a passion to help other people have a better experience than we did.

How have you found starting a business during a global pandemic?

Many of the people we’ve talked to have said despite the lockdown turning much of their life sideways, one silver lining is that they found it has given them more time to stop and reflect, to think about their needs, and how they want to spend their time in future. Because so much of what we champion is about emotional and physical wellbeing, we’ve seen a positive response to the services we’re providing.

What can we hope to see from The Midlife Hub in the future

We launched the social enterprise in May 2020, and we’ve had a great response already. Our plan is to feature businesses across the whole of the UK, so next up for us is growing the number and range of midlife businesses we feature on the site.

What’s your message to anyone reading this article?

We are champions of investing in yourself. And that doesn’t always have to be financial. Taking the time to focus on your own wellbeing is what we’re all about.


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