Change is scary.
No matter what it’s about, we fear the unknown – uncertainty.
That’s why we tend to be a bit lost during transition periods.
They signify the period in which we are adjusting to change – going from one state or condition to another.
Transitional periods come in all shapes and sizes.
Moving on from a breakup, job searching, moving to another country, changing careers, or going through the loss of a family member.
This term is also often related to politics.
Brexit, for example, is all over the news. In short, the United Kingdom is leaving the European Union and have set an action plan for the transition period from March 2019 until end-December 2020.
States have a hard time parting ways and they plan the transition phase in detail to make it easier.
Then there’s no wonder every individual human being struggles through a transitional period.
People lose their bearings in the uncertainty. They’re filled with self-doubts and genuine fear.
Nobody prepared them for it nobody wrote an action plan. They just jumped into it.
Transitions are hard, there is no doubt about it. But they are also a period of growth because people learn the most from their pain.
We all have to go through periods of change.
There are changes we welcome and ones we would rather skip. But there is no roundabout for periods of change.
Still, there are ways in which transition periods can become a lot easier.
1. Accept that you’re feeling lost at the moment
It’s perfectly fine to feel as if you have no control over your life at this point. Being overwhelmed with all sorts of emotions is completely natural.
In fact, it would probably be unusual if you were less emotional when faced with big changes in your life.
Keep in mind that even if changes you are experiencing are positive, that doesn’t mean you’ll be happy about it at first.
Every person transitioning has to go through this adjustment period where you’ll feel a bit lost. Just feel your feelings and let them sink in.
2. Don’t try to rush the process
Being patient is something most of us struggle with. We want everything to fall into place overnight and sadly that’s just not the way things work.
That’s why it’s essential we trust this process of transition and try to relax as much as possible.
Take each day as it comes. The long route is usually the right path to follow.
Good things don’t come easy; they take time. A few months may pass before you start feeling better.
Be careful not to fall into the trap of self-doubt and self-criticism most people experience during this period.
The best way to ensure that doesn’t happen to you is by making a plan to develop positive habits.
Think about all the things that you’re grateful for, then write them down. Write a positive thinking quote on a post-it and tape it somewhere you can always see it during the day.
Sometimes we just need a kind word to feel better.
3. Keep your friends and family close
You’ll need your people through this process. Sometimes they won’t know what to say or give you any helpful answers, but simply having someone who cares for you to confide in is beneficial in so many ways.
Saying your feelings aloud gives you a feeling that some of your burdens have been lifted from your shoulders.
Also hearing yourself speak about the things that trouble you is a way to help you accept them.
4. Declutter your thoughts
Letting go of negative thinking is the best thing you can do for yourself.
Focusing on the positives allows you to see the good sides of the transitional period and enables you to recognize all its benefits.
For instance, if you’ve just gotten out of a relationship, you’re sad, lonely, and confused, and you’re looking back instead of looking forward.
Instead, if you focus on the present moment and looking forward, you’d see all the positives your breakup has brought you.
5. Let go of whatever it is that’s holding you back
Out with the old and in with the new – it seems easy, right? Sadly, it’s all but easy.
Letting go of old habits, situations, and people that aren’t good for our wellbeing can be exceptionally difficult.
It’s easy to reason when there are no emotions and where habits aren’t involved.
But sometimes we have to cut the cord with our old life to build a new and better one.
So leave all the bitter parts of your past behind, forgive, and don’t carry grudges into your next stage.
It will only slow down your process and make your transition that much more difficult.
6. Distract yourself
During the transitional period, it’s important you find some things that provide you an escape from reality you’re in – at least for a little while.
Go out with your friends, go to the movies, find something interesting to watch on Netflix, play an interesting video game, or cuddle up under the blankets with a good book.
Sure, you might not be in the mood to do any of these things, but do them anyway.
Stressing and worrying over the situation you are in will only make things worse. You need to decompress and doing something fun is the best way to achieve that.
7. Do some soul-searching
We definitely need some distractions every now and then, but we can’t be distracted all the time.
We need to take action. And that’s where soul-searching kicks in.
Book some alone time every now and then.
Sometimes people closest to you want what’s best for you, but being around so much heartfelt advice can block you from hearing your own thoughts.
That’s why spending time away from everyone will do you some good.
It will make you reflect on things that really matter to you without being judged.
Those reflections will help you get to the bottom of your problems and the best ways to solve them.
You’ll also get more familiar with your needs and wants, and it’ll provide you with some clarity to where you are headed.
8. Push yourself out of your comfort zone
We all have boundaries we never dare to cross when it comes to our capabilities.
We reach certain limits and that’s it – we never even try to push them.
If you really want to evolve and prosper from this transition period, you have to step outside of your comfort zone.
First of all, you have to have a little more faith in yourself. Don’t allow anyone to tell you that you can’t do something – not even yourself.
Try, and if you fail, try again until you get it right. Nobody succeeded from their first try. It’s all about determination and persistence.
Don’t be afraid to take risks. Do new and exciting things. It will liberate you in ways you never thought possible.
9. Don’t allow someone irrelevant to bring you down
Don’t you just hate when acquaintances or former coworkers ask “Are you still single?” “What are you doing now?” or ” What are your plans for the future?”
First of all, they don’t really care and are asking just for the sake of asking.
They might also be asking because they feel insecure about certain topics or they want to change focus from them to you.
Whatever the case may be, don’t take it personally and by all means don’t overthink it.
You are in your own transitional period. Your life is nobody else’s business.
10. Appreciate the phase you are in
Many people naturally assume that the transition period is all about waiting for something that will work itself out in the future.
That’s why they forget to enjoy the present moment.
They fast forward to the place in the future they want to be in instead of enjoying the here-and-now. Don’t follow in their footsteps.
Acknowledge that there is nothing wrong with feeling disoriented for a certain period of time.
It gives you the opportunity to reevaluate your own life, set some goals, work, and above all – enjoy the process.
Turn your current cons into pros. Recognize how this process has made you closer and more connected with your friends and family.
How it’s stirred you up and kicked you out of the rut you are in. How much fun you’re having with all the new things you’re trying.
Final thoughts on transition periods
Surviving a transitional period is both difficult and exciting.
Difficult because you have so many unanswered questions – uncertainties that you can’t silence – and exciting because you are creating a new you.
Embracing the transition will speed things up a lot.
As soon as you realize that life is full of changes and they happen regularly – some are more vivid and some hidden, some knock the wind out of your sails, and others show you the right path to follow – the easier it will be.
Welcome transition because it will lead you to the improved version of your life.
It will test your limits and make you think outside of the box.
You’re not alone in this journey. There are a lot of people going through the same or similar transition periods.
So walk boldly forward, enjoy the present, and good luck on your journey.