Millions of people face life transitions every day. So how do they do it? What makes some transitions easier than others? Or easier for some people and not for others? Bottom-line – what are the keys to making a smooth transition?
When coaching clients through life transitions, I find the more my clients know about what is happening now and what might happen in the future, the easier it is to chunk down the tasks, reduce the stress, focus on the steps and make a smoother transition.
Let’s take for example the transition from high school to college, a stressful time for both students and parents. What needs to be done to facilitate a smooth and organized transition? The questions from teens can range from what needs to be purchased, packed and moved to bigger concerns about health
- How much “stuff” does a person really need at college?
- Can I wear the same clothes for a few days if they don’t stink?
- What if I don’t like the food in the dining hall? Can I just order pizza?
- Why are my parents worried about me having too much work to do? I have lots of free time every day to get things done.
- Where can I keep my medication so nobody takes it?
Here is a list of other common transitions that can take a toll on us physically and emotionally.
- Empty nest syndrome
- Adult children returning home
- Marriage or divorce
- Moving to a new home/new city
- New job/career change
- New baby/new pet
Ask yourself the following questions to gain knowledge and create a smoother transition:
- What skills do you need to learn before making a transition? Where will you learn those skills?
- What strategies have you used in the past that might help you now and what new strategies (from books, webinars, friends, coaches, family) that you can utilize?
- How much money will it take to fund this transition? Where will you get the funding?
- Where will you go for support? (Know your “go to” support people, whether personal or professional. There is no need to go it alone and valuable to have support at the ready.)
- What routines do you have, or need to put in place, to reduce stress and keep you healthy? Exercise, meditation, nutritious meals?
- How will this transition impact family members, partners and friends? How might you support their needs while taking care of yourself?
I encourage you to plan in advance when possible and seek out support as you, or your child, get ready to make a life transition. Our JST trained coaches have the knowledge and skills to support individuals and families going through transitions and life changes.