The only constant is change, and much of the time that change is hard. Most of us experience at least some feelings of stress when we enter into a new relationship, start a new job or move someplace new. I do believe human beings are adaptable creatures—if not we would never survive. However, gracefully embracing life’s new seasons in healthy and positive ways requires experience, knowledge, skills AND a good support system.
Perhaps the first step in becoming an “expert transitioner” is realizing that you will transition several times in your life and face multiple seasons of both good and bad stress. Life seasons where things stay mostly the same for a little while do exist. But eventually the universe always throws a curve ball. The upside of these curve balls is that if well received we learn, grow and emerge stronger AND (hopefully) more prepared for life’s next big transition.
With fall around the corner I find myself making several lists of all the things I need to accomplish before January 1. This past week I have been painting, cleaning, organizing and shopping as I am trying to complete several projects and finally cross them off my list. (Cue the stress!) With all of my rushing around and trying to complete things, I have had to pause and kindly remind myself that things will never be complete and I do not need to overly stress. Because once I finish my current “to do list” I will of course make another one. And even if I resolved to take on nothing new (which of course I won’t), eventually life would hand me its own version of a “to do list” in the form of a new friendship, family need, dream, etc.
In the next few months I know many of you will be busy with your own “to do lists” in light of school, work and the big end of year holidays. When you start to feel overwhelmed I challenge you to remember that life is a series of unending transitions AND that these transitions can foster beauty, growth and maturity in your life if handled with the right skill set and support system (including a seasoned psychotherapist).
I also have one more end of year challenge for you. At the beginning of each year (January 1), I am really good at setting and focusing on life goals. But, as the year comes to a close I tend to lose sight of what I hoped to achieve when the year began. So, as 2015 winds down I encourage you to find one thing you would like to engage in before January 1. It can be as small as reading a particular book or as big as training for a half marathon.
Whatever it is, resolve to do something positive for your mental health in your current life season—before the season passes you by. Seize the moment before the next transition comes so that when you look back your life will be a colorful tapestry filled with intentional moments of growth and beauty. Need some help with goal setting or stress management? Make an appointment today with one of our seasoned Orlando licensed mental health counselors by calling 407-443-8862.