Let’s talk about transitions today. Transitions can be very challenging.
Sometimes we’re super excited about something new! But sometimes we’re mourning what we’re leaving behind. We’re feeling a little anxious or maybe a lot anxious about what’s to come.
People come into my world sometimes because they’re in transition, transitions by choice or perhaps not by choice. Transition simply means that you’re leaving something behind and you’re moving towards something new.
And that can have all kinds of challenges in it. But I want to give a little bit of advice for how to navigate that in a way that makes the transition a little bit easier, a little bit easier depending on what you’re in.
So we’re going to look at the past, the future, and the present.
Let’s look at the past first. A really great tool to use when you are in a moment of pain, a moment of mourning, a moment of loss, and this is what transition can very much be. A good tool to use is to take a moment to think about other times in your past where you’ve been in hard moments and challenging moments and first, acknowledge you survived. You got through. You did it. You did it! And you can do it this time, too.
And then also look for little hints. What helped you in that past memory, that past event, that past experience that you can use now in your current transition, in this current feeling of loss, maybe difficulty? What worked that helped you get through that old experience that you can use right now? Because there are all kinds of pieces of gold back there that we can mine for what we do well. So that’s how you use your past in this transition right now.
Now let’s talk about the future.
In the future, you’re going toward something new and you’re going to want to grow into a version of yourself that is going to experience life having learned from the experiences you’ve had. So even if you’re in happy transition, really any transition as you’re going through it, even the moments of loss…what are the lessons here that you can take forward into your future?
If you’re exiting a relationship or you’re getting booted out of a relationship, that is a transition. If that has been a relationship that’s been in your life, you can look at it (even if you’re grieving through this experience) and ask, “What can I learn here so that things are different for me in the future, so that things are different in my future relationships?” You can actually simultaneously be experiencing grief and loss and also have the intention to learn, right?
Same thing if you’re changing jobs, moving to a different place in the world… as you think about what this next piece looks like, what lessons can you learn from the experience you’re leaving behind that you can bring forward into the new experience and the new YOU? That gives even the most painful transition, the pain, most painful loss…It gives it meaning. It means that it had a purpose. It was there to teach us something. This old experience, even if it was painful, was there to teach us something.
As we move into our new experience…so that’s looking at the future… what do you want that to look like and how do you want it to be different than what you’ve had before? We can go to new job after new job after new job, but if we keep bringing our old self and we don’t learn anything, then our experiences are just going to repeat. The universe wants us to learn our lessons and so it’ll keep bringing those lessons into our lives.
And what about the present and the present moment? There is always some loss when you go through a transition. And sometimes we’re happily running away from whatever we were leaving behind, but it’s still new and it’s still different and there’s gonna be a little bit lost and there there’s going to be complicated feelings in transitions.
So in the present moment, feel your feelings, feel them, allow yourself to feel them, no matter what they are, no matter what they are. You can be super excited about something, but still be feeling the sadness of leaving something behind. This happens when you have kids, right? You can be super excited to have a kid, but that doesn’t mean you’re not going to be a little bit missing out on this old life that you’ve had.
And it happens when you’re raising kids, right? They get up and they start walking. But now you’re never going to have that cute little crawler anymore, right? You always lose something when you’re going into something new. Most of the time. So feel your feelings. It doesn’t matter what they are, no matter how odd they seem to you, don’t resist them. Just allow them. Because when we resist our feelings, it’s just going to take longer to transition. And we can stuff them and we think that we’re moving on, but they’re going to resurface in other ways.
So let yourself feel your feelings. Be in the transition. Acknowledge that you’re in a transition and that it’s a process. It’s not like a boom, we’re done. We’re over. We’re moving on.
Use your past as a beautiful place to find what you do well and when you’ve been strong.
Use the future as you want to see it, as this opportunity to learn lessons in this experience that you’re leaving behind to take forward so that you don’t repeat things you don’t want to repeat. Use right now to feel your feelings so that this truly is a transition to something new and different.
Hey, let’s connect! I’d love to hear from you. You can find me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. If you’d like to sign up for my biweekly newsletter, The Love List, scroll to the bottom of the page.