Transitions and Milestones
It is that time of year that we get graduation announcements in our mailboxes and maybe even attend a graduation ceremony or two. Graduating high school is one of the first major milestones we accomplish in life. We start on our academic journey as a 5 year old and emerge as a young adult prepared to go out and make our way in the world. I recently attended a graduation and was flooded with memories of my own graduations and other major milestones like getting married or having children.
It is important for many reasons to have ceremonies and rituals to celebrate marriages, graduations, retirements etc. We have the opportunity to pause and reflect on the life transition. However, I have noticed that it is common to feel rushed through these transitions. I recall that once I got married, I immediately was asked when we were going to have children. I remember thinking “Geez, let me get used to being married first!” No sooner than I gave birth to my first child was I asked when he was going to get a little brother or sister. Upon sharing my experiences with other newlyweds or new parents, I realized that I wasn’t the only one who felt “rushed” and that I needed more time to adjust to these new life roles.
Divorce is a very stressful and painful transition. Ideally, it is beneficial to spend some time adjusting to being single again before dating. However, it is common for well-meaning friends and family to try and set up their newly single loved one on a date or encourage them to “get on back out there and meet someone” thinking that it will help them to get over the pain of the divorce.
Why is it important to take time to adjust to transitions in life? Going from student to an employee entering our career requires adjustments in behavior and mindset. We take off our “student” hat and put on our “career” hat. Sometimes we need to learn new communication and budgeting skills as a newlywed as we transition from thinking of “me” to “we.” Any first time parent will tell you that there is a whole wide range of emotions and stressors to adjust to in those first weeks of your baby’s life. Feeling comfortable sharing our thoughts and feelings as we transition through life’s milestones is important. Many times it is at these major life transitions where people find that they need some extra help or coping skills to ease the stress of these adjustments. Mental health professionals are experts in helping people struggling with life’s changes and transitions whether they are positive transitions like becoming a parent or a negative one like losing a partner through death or divorce. Should you feel like you would benefit from meeting with a mental health professional, call Life Enhancement Counseling Services at (407) 443-8862 to make an appointment today.