Change can sometimes be difficult.
Change can also be vital, exhilarating and liberating.
But what about the transition period – that tricky time between when you decide to make a change (or have the need for change thrust upon you) and when your new plan comes together.
I’m talking about that time you feel a bit in limbo, when it feels like your life is on hold.
Transitions can sometimes feel like we are stuck, though it may not actually be the case.
Here are my tips on the best ways to successfully deal with periods of transition.
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I know you didn’t want to hear that. I’m not a big fan of the be patient mantra myself.
However the advice still stands.
Regardless of your frustration levels (and you are bound to have some, so you need to devise a healthy way to deal with those feelings), sometimes the only thing we can do is be patient.
Do the work
Naturally if there is work or a task that needs to be done to help the transition along, by all means you should be doing it.
The patience I mention above doesn’t have anything to do with sitting around doing nothing, simply hoping good things randomly come your way.
You are responsible for making things happen.
A transition may also involve work in the form of emotional soul-searching.
Related post – 20 Questions to Ask Yourself If You Had a Tough Year
Often transitions involve an element of letting go. Moving forward means leaving certain attachments behind so you can grow and evolve.
It means not living in the past and holding onto old feelings of hurt and bitterness.
If you move through a transition yet carry all of your old baggage into the next phase of your life, you are bound to face the same demons further down the track.
Letting go isn’t easy. Some people find it particularly hard.
Do your best to let go of whatever it is that’s holding you back.
Related posts on letting go–
- Letting Go of What Happened (When you are still Dealing with the Consequences)
- How to Overcome Feelings of That Should Have Been Me
- Don’t Let the Past Hold you Back
- 10 Life-Changing Quotes on Forgiveness
Move forward in other areas
Often it can be tempting to just put everything on hold until your new state of play comes into being.
Transitions can tend to be all-consuming and our other plans end up on the back burner. We neglect people and other issues (not to mention ourselves)!
I think on some level this is often normal when a project takes a lot of our time and energy, just don’t let your life get too one-dimensional.
Try to maintain an element of balance.
Control your stress levels
Transitions can be particularly stressful – naturally some more than others depending on your situation.
Times of transition might require us to be a bit more inventive about how we deal with stress. To be honest, your normal forms of stress release might not cut it during a particularly difficult time.
You may need more relaxation or time out than usual or you may need to find other ways to feel calm and relaxed. Try out different methods to see what works for you.
It’s probably important to point out here that controlling your stress levels doesn’t mean always being in control. It doesn’t mean putting on a brave face and pretending you are fine or bottling up your feelings when you are struggling.
It means being open and honest about the emotions you are experiencing.
If you need help with your stress levels, CreativeLive has a Stress is Optional that might be just what you need. This online course is run by Dr. Cynthia Ackrill and can be taken in the comfort of your own home at your own pace. This course will give you powerful tools to relieve stress and develop greater emotional resilience.
Don’t forget to enjoy the moment
Waiting can often mean we don’t fully appreciate the here and now.
Being in a transitional period often means projecting forward, working towards something we want in the future. You will know you are in a transitional period when you find yourself using the word when a lot
- when I get a new job
- when the house is finished
- when the divorce is finalized
- when I recover from the operation.
The problem with all of this forward-thinking is that we fail to enjoy or completely miss present moments. All of that projecting forward has us overlooking the joy of now.
Related post – The One Thing You Can Do Right Now to Feel Happier and Less Stressed
There is no doubt transitions can be difficult. Waiting can be unpleasant. Most of the time we are impatient to get on with things.
When you find yourself in a transitional period; hang in there, be kind to yourself and those around you and hopefully you’ll be moving onto your next exciting adventure before you know it.
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Read Next – 10 Important Ways to Make Yourself a Priority
I’m in one of those transitional periods right now. I didn’t even realize it until I saw your tweet. It sank in even more when I got to the part where you said “you are in a transitional period when you find yourself using the word when a lot.” I had an aha! moment. Now I just need to figure out what my next move is.
All great advice Thea if we can just take our own right! I mean for me the patience thing is a biggie. I’ve always been very impatient although I’ve really gotten better over the years. I’m not as bad but that’s so hard at times.
Letting go and controlling the stress are two other big keys. Nothing in life comes easily right so if we want something bad enough or if change hits us in the face whether we like it or not, change is inevitable.
Great advice Thea, thank you. Great to see you, it’s been awhile since I’ve stopped by. Hope you are well.
I absolutely love this post! I just discovered your blog and I am impressed and inspired. Periods of transitions can be scary but after I adjust to it, my life is even better.
I look forward to reading more of your blog posts to come. I hope you have a fabulous evening.
Woman in Leadership
Thank you so much for your comment. I am thrilled that you find my blog inspiring. Always so lovely to hear.
Thanks again for taking the time to comment and I look forward to chatting with you again soon.
All the best
Thank you, Thea. Your post is very inspiring and helpful. Taehoon Kim, experiencing transitional period, South Korea.