Many of us are going through a huge life transition with the layoffs happening around us, or to us. I myself have been through layoffs, and felt caught off guard, took it personally, impacted my self-worth, and confidence. I remember coming home after a layoff, and laying on the ground of my living room in total shock of what just happened. I felt a deep sense of fear, worry, and anxiety about what was next, how my finances were impacted, and thought I had just to take anything, and quickly. I did not feel I had the time to slow down, embrace the transition and truly feel into what could be a gift, an opportunity to truly start something new that aligned with my values, purpose, and natural talents and gifts. Fast forward, I started my coaching career 12 years ago, and it was all a result of allowing myself to slow down enough to get clarity, insight, courage, asking for support from coaches, mentors, therapists,, and then I was ready to take the steps each day to make it happen. It has been the most amazing journey of growth, learning, joy, and most importantly, making a difference in people’s lives. I share my story in order to provide hope and to encourage you to embrace transition and these “in-between” times, and allow yourself to truly slow down to identify what you truly value in this life, how you want to make a difference, to dream big, and work backwards to make it happen. It’s a windy path, but well worth the journey.
Transitions are a redirection, a pivot. It’s a point where time slows down, to shift to move into a different direction. Think of a pendulum, or going reverse in your car. There has to be a pause, to move in to a different direction, with intention of where you want to go.
Whether it is myself, friends, or clients, each has been experiencing change on different levels internally and externally in lives. Transitions, even if the most exciting, can be incredibly disruptive. Oftentimes, a transition, if not voluntary, can be felt as frustrating, scary, and exhausting. But there is ALWAYS space for observing ourselves, learning, growth, and taking nuggets of wisdom from these transitions, IF we allow ourselves to be present, slow down, surrender to, and embrace the journey. We are so used to doing, and waiting for the next thing to happen. A new job, a new house, a new relationship, a trip, a death, a different situation, even if seemingly insignificant. We say to ourselves “When this happens, I will be happy” or “When this happens over, I will be relieved”.
While hiking recently while in the midst of another major life transition in my life, I noticed a single poppy in a vast field. I realized at this moment that a flower is always in transition. It is the tranquility that the flower creates that stops us to notice, and the quiet patience it maintains, reminding us to find peace, gratitude, and growth in the space of uncertainty. These moments allow us to reflect on the opportunity to develop the awareness needed to build resilience while in transition.
Making the choice to move from Kirkland, WA to a new state after 23 years, living in different locations while in this transition, building a home, my father this past year are all overwhelming and are transitions, have been disruptive, heartfelt, hard, and positive all at once. I would not change any of it. In the midst of all of this, I realize that there is a tremendous opportunity to slow down, spend time with family, cherish these moments that I will never get back, and surrender to, and embrace the new journey, versus resist it. This is an opportunity to get deeply curious about why, and how I respond to what life throws at me, and how I can let go of unproductive thoughts that have held me back in the past. To notice thought patterns and behavior that no longer serve me, and to create new ones that do through reflection, practice, discipline, and mindfulness. To TRUST and view life as a flow and evolution, an opportunity to shift and change, rather than being victim of the intensity, speed, and holding on to what was. Just as a flower has beauty and is resilient in the most tough, and unexpected environments.
Great questions to ask yourself while going through transition are:
This is an incredible opportunity to take small moments each day to reflect, document, and re-read to track the growth, progress, new perspectives and to develop the resilience needed to move through life’s evolutions.
Life can feel that it is more about the time spent waiting for something to happen than it is about something happening. In this mindset, we are not present and miss the opportunities for reflection and the nuggets that are so special that we can take advantage of, as well as gaining clarity and growth. Big, and small events in our lives are preceded by many days and nights of anticipation, dreaming, planning, organizing, and waiting. The times of waiting in between small events are actually the majority of our lives. These in-between times are anything but uneventful, serving as rich possibilities filled with opportunities for reflection and preparation. Whether going through a layoff, starting a new job, job loss, break up, new relationship, moving, or an anticipated death, we have a finite period of time in which to prepare internally and externally for the upcoming event that will define a new chapter in our lives.
There is a reason a flower, or any type of change takes time to fulfill itself, just as nature provides the time to evolve, grow, shed, and rebuild with resilience and beauty. Give yourself the gift to document and take advantage of the IN-BETWEEN. Savor the beauty and lessons that life provides. In this mindset, you will remain fully engaged in the present as you await your future, which is a vital experience in itself, and will be peacefully surprised at the lessons and the experience the transition provided, and the resilience you have developed.
You don’t have to go through transition alone. If you would like some guidance and coaching through transition, please connect.
I would love to help.