Transitions

“Look at every exit as being an entrance somewhere else.” ~ Tom Stoppard

We all go through transitions. Some we initiate and others present as they are intended. They can be pronounced or they can be subtle. Transitions, however, are as constant as change because every major change includes a transition period with transitional experiences. Often we resist this transitional period and accompanying experiences just as we resist change. We want to be at the new spot, the changed behavior, or the result we sought to attain. While we want the change we desire, could we be missing the most valuable part of the experience, the transition?

There are times, for some, when changes take place simultaneously. This scenario can be stressful. Even one change can be significant. Think about events is which you were measurably involved. Were they exciting? Were they draining? How much stress did you feel? I worked with a client who was building a new home, launching a new business, having a new website developed, involved in a child’s wedding, and shifting into pre-retirement mode (as traditionally defined by age). He had a lot on his plate!

These events were overlapping and very time, energy and space intensive. However, four strategies made the difficult easier, the challenges less frustrating, and his enjoyment more joyful.

  1. In change, especially big change, let flow show you the way through the transition. We are so conditioned to make plans and take action that when big changes occur or are anticipated, we take the planning and actions to an even more intense level. When you relinquish total control and allow some of the decisions to sit, flow will show you the way. When flow guides you, the creative spark needed or the right person to do something always appears and right on time.
  2. It is easy to focus on the end of the transition, but the process determines success. No matter where we think something will end up as a result of change, the process will guide us to success if we trust it. When you focus on what could go wrong, you divert the direction of your intended outcome. Ignore the naysayers and keep focusing on and trusting what you want.
  3. Looking ahead to what could be and looking back at what has been, only keeps you from looking at the present. Change and transitions are ripe for the games of the ego-mind. Remember the ego operates almost entirely in the past (where you have been and why) and the future (where you could be and why that is better than the past). When you choose now from the possibilities in front of you, the transition will be smooth without a beginning or an end, yet it will take you exactly to the experiences you want, by presenting them over and over now. All choices are made now.
  4. All transitions are personal and even with the best intentions, other people’s  opinions, suggestions, and advice is just that – other people’s. I often find that change is tough for people because they are waiting for permission or advice on whether they should or how they should change. (Here’s a post that addresses “shoulds.”) This continues during the transition, if we trust the opinions, suggestions, and advice of others more than what we know is best intended for us and by us.

If you are making changes and going through transitions, I wish you the best for navigating them not only successfully but also effectively. Transitions make life interesting while expanding your possibilities and potential. Let it all flow, be in the process, be present, and take it all personally. You will be rewarded!

20 thoughts on “Transitions

  1. This is terrific. I had a character in a play, “Cloud Mother”. The character was Irish and came to New Zealand on a sailing ship. The English settlers wouldn’t adapt to the new environment, but brought England with them. She said to them: “You cling to grass in a windy storm and you’ll not let yourself be blown nowhere.” Your posting took me back to it! Thank you…

  2. You’ve captured the essence of transitions Eric, Great post. Your advice gives true meaning to the words “live in the now,” as with so many things in life, “it’s the getting, not the having”.

    • Thank you my wise friend. Transitions aren’t tricky, we just need to be aware of them and choose how we want to chart our way through them. Personally, I love how they open up possibilities to explore. Be well, Chris.

  3. Excellent article, Eric, & so grounding & relevant to me given I’m in transition (having been made retrenched 22 August & not yet found permanent work).

    This is just fantastic – very positive. THANK YOU 🙂

    • Good to learn that you are letting things flow. (Rhetorically): Curious about how that feels and is setting with you? All the best with your renovations. Might they be taking place while you’re traversing the Northern Hemisphere? That would be nice! Thanks for commenting.

  4. In astrology we call this period the balsamic where we have one foot in the past and on foot in the future. While we have our sights on the future we are looking at the past to see what served us and what didn’t serve us to bring with us into the new cycle. It is a time to observe without judgment, yet with clarity and nonattachment (notice I did not say attachment/detachment as they are set). Qualitatively, it can make transition smoother. However, often times this is not the case because we resist change and releasing the familiar. Resistance is part of the human process that is important to embrace, otherwise we are resisting resistance and where does that lead?

  5. Thanks, Carol. I can definitely see/feel the qualitative contribution to observing. I know the notion (or act) of releasing can be difficulty for many, as is readily known with habits and beliefs. Still, there are those who will resist resistance and wonder why they aren’t making desired progress. I appreciate the sharing of your wisdom!

  6. Thank you! I enjoyed this very much!!
    I like the lists that you shared about easing into the transition process. Strangely, there are times when I am given the opportunity to reflect on the changes which have occurred within me, but most times I can’t see it! But, I’m learning that, that is okay. I should just be grateful that those transitions were subtle 😛

  7. Great post! Thanks for sharing your insights, enjoyed reading this my friend. A wise man once told me…life is a story filled with chapters. Just because something ends doesn’t mean the story ends, it just means it’s time for a new chapter and the previous chapter is now part of your overall story. Anyway, it helped me with some things at that time in my life. Enjoy reading your blog. Have a good day!

    • Brian, I am always warmed by and appreciative of your comments. I have been blessed with having some of those wise people in my life at poignant times as well. Thanks for sharing the fact and wisdom. A good day returned to you!

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