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Self Renewal: Dealing with Life Transitions

The only thing that is constant is change. – Heraclitus, Greek philosopher

Life is made up of a series of changes, transformations, and movements. These changes are what force us to develop and grow as individuals. But even when we know that these life transitions are for our own benefit, can they can stiff be very difficult to deal with emotionally.

Most of us cringe at the very idea of change. Maintaining the status quo is something we all strive to do. Life transitions, in many people’s eyes, represent loss, abandonment, and uncertainty. But the fact is that those very changes hold the potential for a better future. Seeing the positive in every transition is the key to being a stronger, more well-rounded adult at the end of it.

With every life transition, there can be a sense of grief at the loss you are experiencing. Even when you have been expecting, or even welcoming, a life transition, it’s still perfectly normal to feel sadness for what you are leaving behind. That sense of loss, along with the fear of the unknown and unexpected have to be dealt with before you’re ready to embrace your new surroundings.

That’s where the importance of a strong support system comes in. Friends, family, partners and spouses all play a pivotal role in helping you cope with life transitions. However, when your regular support system isn’t enough (or when you find yourself without anyone who supports your decisions) it may be time to seek professional help. An objective therapist or counselor can help you move past self doubt and fear; allowing you to sort through all of the aspects and possible outcomes of your choices.

There’s nothing wrong with admitting that you need a little help dealing with the adjustment of a life transition. In fact, counseling, therapy, and support groups are all geared towards helping people work through some of life’s most emotionally difficult moments, including:

  • Marriage or Remarriage
  • Divorce
  • The Birth of a child/ post partum depression
  • Empty Nest Syndrome
  • Career Changes
  • Midlife changes/crisis
  • Dealing with the aging process
  • Caring for elderly parents
  • Identity/Gender questions
  • Spiritual/Moral questions
  • Death of a loved one

The goal for anyone going through a major life transition is to adjust, grow and learn from the experience. Alone, or with the help of a counselor or therapist, it is possible to not only survive these life changes, but thrive from them.