9 First Steps for Times of Transition

9 First Steps for Times of Transition
Tamara Lechner

There are turning points in people’s lives that occur in a natural progression – transitioning from college to the working world, from being single to being married, from taking care of yourself to being a parent, and even eventually taking care of your parents as they age. You might even be getting back into the workforce as your children become more independent. All of these times can feel incredibly uncertain and are usually accompanied by two big questions:

  1. Who am I?
  2. What do I want?

The stages of life are much like the stages of a caterpillar’s metamorphosis with one key difference: the caterpillar surrenders to the experience of caterpillar to chrysalis to butterfly, trusting its DNA to do its job. Humans have this annoying need to examine and plan for each stage of their evolution. So how can you learn from the butterfly and allow for your evolution without overthinking it?

When you hit a crossroads where you are no longer a caterpillar, but not yet a butterfly, here are some tips for moving forward despite uncertainty:

Don’t Rush

Moving frantically from one life stage to the next can leave you feeling both stressed out and tired. Take your time. The caterpillar never hurries to become a butterfly.

Celebrate Where You Have Been

When you’re at a crossroads about what to do next, spending some time reflecting on what gave you joy in the last stage of your life will help attune your inner compass and move you forward. For example, if you loved packing healthy lunches for your kids each day, maybe nutrition is your next adventure, or if you loved posting travel pictures from your vacations, maybe photography classes would thrill you.

Go Outside

People have turned to nature for generations to find stillness and a deep connection to their true inner self. Experiences like a walkabout—which historically refers to a rite of passage during which indigenous male Australians would live in the wilderness to make the spiritual and traditional transition into manhood—have always been a part of self-discovery. Spend some quiet time in nature.

Get Curious

Opening your mind will help you to become curious about the things in life that matter to you. Play with having the perspective of a child. Often searching for life’s next adventure is looked through the lens of the “shoulds” of your upbringing. The cultural, societal, and even political values you once chose don’t need to define you as you move through life. Looking through a child-like lens can help you see your choice with a new perspective.

Don’t Ask the Experts

At some point in your life, you stopped thinking that you were capable of choosing wisely for yourself. If you don’t know who you are and what you want, what makes you think anyone else will be able to tell you? Of course, you can ask opinions about what your strengths are and how others see you, but ultimately, it …read more
Source: Deepak Chopra  

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