It seems to me that life is a series of transitions. Some are big like your child graduating high school and then leaving for college. Some are much smaller like when you’ve been on vacation and you have to transition back into your worker mindset. Is one easier than the other? Not necessarily, it’s just that some take a bit or a lot longer to assimilate into your life. Regardless of whether the transition seems large or small to you right now, how fast you adjust to it, is largely a matter of your mindset towards the transition.
A transition is a time when change happens. It’s when we’re adjusting to new circumstances that are about to happen or have already happened. A transitional period is that time in your life where you take a new look at your life as it is right now. Maybe you make changes, maybe you don’t. During this period, you’ll frequently make reevaluations of your life and then decide whether change is needed.
Many of us fight transitions. Think of a job loss. This is not a transitional period that many people would look forward to having in their lives. Do you accept that your job is no longer a part of your life and move forward? Or, do you just get mad at you former employer and blame them for all the problems in your life? You might do a little bit of both, but the sooner that you can have acceptance around your situation, the sooner you can look for solutions that will move you forward again in life.
Your transitions can be rocky or smooth. Much of it depends on whether you are open to exploring the changes that are happening. Are you ready to look inside of yourself to become aware of how the changes are settling in your life? Or, are you pushing change away, fighting against it only to make the transitional period longer and harder? You have the ability to navigate a transitional period with more ease simply by being aware of what you are feeling and accepting your current state of being.
My recent transition back to life at home comes after 3 weeks of unusual activity for me. I was out of town for 2 of those weeks with the week in between packed full of appointments and other out of the ordinary activity. So, this week was a week of transition back to ‘normal’ life for me.
My vacation was the last week out of those 3 weeks I mentioned. As so often happens with my family, this vacation was an active one with something planned every single day. I enjoyed this break from routine but it wasn’t exactly a week of rest. So, when I got back home I found myself not quite ready to transition back to ‘normal’ life. I attempted to start the week back slowly but ended up forgetting about a scheduled meeting. Oops! Not the smooth transition that I was looking for this week. This set me up for a feeling of not being in the flow that is my life and instead I felt ‘off’. I wasn’t intentionally fighting this transition but something in me just wasn’t ready to be back to ‘normal.’ Most likely this came from being a bit tired from an active vacation.
Coming back from several weeks of unusual activities to my ‘normal’ life isn’t a big transition in the grand scheme of things. But, it is still a transition. I think how you handle the small ones can indicate how you will handle the bigger life transitions. In my example of coming back from vacation, when I wasn’t quite ready to jump right back into life, I took the time to acknowledge that this was going to be a bit messy for a day or so as I got back into routine. That acceptance of the messiness that comes from getting back into a routine gave me the ability to notice my choices as I re-integrated into my life. I was then able to notice what really needed to be done right away, what could be put off for a day or two and what really wasn’t important at all.
As you move through your own life transitions take some time to just notice your body. Notice your breath. Notice your thoughts. Giving yourself a little bit of space to be aware of what is happening in your life right now, can be a gift that enables you to live your life more fully as you are able to then take advantage of opportunities that await you on the other side of the transition.
Join my upcoming group to explore the transitions in your life. We’ll navigate through changes that you are ready to make and you’ll come away with a sense of ease that will help you through your future transitions as well. You’ll learn tools to help you smoothly navigate those life transitions. Sign up for the group session that starts in July here.