Biggest Life Transitions and How to Deal with Them

By Gayla Gilmore

No one would argue that 2020 was a year that was transitional on all fronts. All the ideas, thoughts, habits, and norms became questionable.One thing that was inevitable are thoughts surrounding change and transition. Change and transitional, used as a verb, can be used interchangeably. But change, as a noun, is an act of becoming different, while transition as a noun is the process or action in implementing that change. Therefore, how do you deal with life’s biggest transitions?

Job Security

To get to the action, one must identify life’s biggest challenges and transitions. This will differ from person to person. One life transition is job security. The professionals in society, whether it be educators or headhunters, have always given advice about how to secure jobs and finances to be a productive citizen in society. This can include joining the right clubs/societies, going to the right schools, and preparing your financial portfolio. But one rarely talks about when all those things are not in order. One must go back to the drawing board and plan. One thing that the pandemic of 2020 has taught us is planning sometimes does not work. So, what can you do?

1. Acknowledge that there has been a shift (beyond your control). Often people operate out of panic and fear. Feeling angry, feeling sad, feeling disappointed, feeling overwhelmed, it is your prerogative, and healthy for you to do so.

2. Ask for help. This may be the biggest challenge for people to do, to admit that you need help, whether it is educational, physical, financial, or emotional. To do this, you must be vulnerable.

3. Be prepared, and more importantly, settled in your spirit that things may not go back to your normal. “New Normal” is a new term that will forever propel us into the future. It will be the term used to start any new venture, because what you once knew will forever be changed.

Having Children

Another life transition is having children. Whether planned or not,bringing life into the world is considered a responsibility beyond measure. New parents are often overwhelmed, overworked, and sleep deprived. Here are three ways to adjust to this life transition:

1. Ask for help.One way of taking care of yourself so that you can take care of your newborn, is, once again asking for help. Whether it is your partner, your friend, your family, whoever you consider your tribe, ask for help without apology. Say what you need and accept.

2. Do not feel guilty for taking time for yourself. I know, easier said than done. But parents still need to feel like adults and have adult conversations and interactions, as well as being left alone when needing a break from it all.

3. Enjoy the entire process. There will undoubtedly be ups and downs, but enjoy the ups and deal with the downs one at a time.

Ways to Manage Life Transitions

The ultimate takeaway is that life changes and transitions will transpire. It is how you deal with them that will help you learn and grow as a healthy human being. Remember, be vulnerable and ask for help, take a break, get sleep, and feel what you feel with no apologies. Create a space and lifestyle that will support you mentally, emotionally, physically, educationally, and financially. Therapy will provide the tools needed to create the lifestyle that you want. Be compassionate with yourself and remember with therapy, you are doing the work. When you are ready to start this new path, we will collaborate together on how to navigate these life transitions.