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Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
July 8, 2016
Sarah Margolin, LMFT
Transitions are part of life.
We all go through them, every single day, and all throughout our lives.
Change is inevitable.
There are numerous different kinds of transitions. Some are minor. Some are major. Some are memorable. Some...not so much!
Getting from home to work is a transition. Getting from morning to afternoon is a transition. So is crossing the street!
Those are relatively minor, we hope.
Then there are the major ones, those that we never forget.
Some transitions lead to wonderful experiences, even if that doesn't seem likely at the time.
One example of this is ending an important relationship, only to enter into a beautiful new one, later on down the road.
Some people end jobs, find it very difficult at the time, and then discover new opportunities, that wouldn't have otherwise become available. Hence the term, blessing in disguise!
We smile then, and shake our heads in wonder, at the way life turns out.
Sometimes, we are delightfully blindsided!
Even the positive transitions in our lives can cause stress, though.
Some examples are, getting married, beginning an exciting, new enterprise, or having a baby.
Even when the transition is necessary or desired, it can still feel stressful.
People ask whether this is normal.
They say, "I wanted this change! Why does it feel so hard?"
Yes, it is normal! Change is stressful by nature.
We can handle stress, though! We navigate through the tough times, and then we adjust and manage. Cycles in life are to be anticipated.
An example is the experience of moving to a place where you really want to be.
It's still hard, but then you're there!
Nobody likes moving. However, the alternative would often be to stay in an undesirable situation, or to stagnate.
We often look back and realize that the changes we made were for the best.
Never taking a risk, and hesitating to change anything, leads to other kinds of negative emotions! That is difficult, too.
Regret and sadness, related to missed opportunities, are also painful to experience.
Sometimes, we miss valuable opportunities, or we are too indecisive.
Then, an ache remains, knowing that it's too late to change our minds.
We attempt to avoid this type of outcome.
We anticipate our regrets, ideally, which informs our decisions in life.
I have taken many risks, and I have very few regrets!
However, it is important to make the changes in a calculated and thoughtful way!
Research and forethought can help you to make the best choices for yourself and your life.
What potentially beneficial transition are you resisting entering into?
What positives could come of your taking a leap?
What will happen if you let go of the familiar vine, and swing toward the next one?
It's an unknown. It's a risk.
But you will grab the new vine, and it just might be the best one so far!
Be brave. It's worth it.
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