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Change Just Ahead Sign“I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.” ~ Jimmy Dean

Summer is a time of transitions. The weather warms and the earth turns lush and in full bloom. Summer also brings life transitions like graduations, retirements, new jobs, and new schedules for many of us. While these types of life changes can be exciting and bring relief, they can also create anxiety and leave us feeling unstable and unbalanced while we settle into a new rhythm. Retirement, for example, can be a hard time for many people, as they feel like they’re losing one of their primary identities. Dealing with transitions is certainly not easy, but there are ways to make the process less traumatic and more manageable.

Here are some tips for helping your transitions go smoother:

Allow yourself time to adjust: You may be experiencing big life changes, and you may understandably feel overwhelmed and unsettled to find your everyday schedule in flux. Remember that you will develop a new routine, a new normal. We are creatures of habit and it’s comforting to have a routine in place. Don’t rush the process.

Leaves Transforming Into ButterfliesMake time for reflection: Often we jump from one activity to another, without pausing to reflect on how we feel about it, or the impact it’s having on us. If this is a transition time for you, allow yourself time and space to grieve, celebrate, heal, or whatever else you need to do. Reflection allows you to pinpoint specific challenges, and be more mindful about your next steps. Some people find it helpful to journal, meditate, talk with a therapist, life coach, or faith leader, or take long walks.

Shift your perspective: Yes, change is hard, but change also presents opportunities. Try to keep an open mind and look for ways to turn challenges into opportunities, which can provide a deep sense of accomplishment and satisfaction. If you’re planning to retire, for example, think about your passions or what you’d like to do with your time after work before retiring. Planning ahead, even a little, reduces anxiety and gives us something to look forward to.

Get support: You don’t need to go through this transition alone. In fact, this is a great time to lean on friends and family, who can provide comfort, support, and perspective. Better yet, find someone who’s been through – and successfully adjusted to – a similar transition to what you’re experiencing to offer advice and support.

Breathe deeply every day: Taking a deep breath is so simple and natural, and making it a mindful activity has been proven to reduce body tension. Yet we often forget to consciously do what makes us feel better. Check out some tips for breathing deeply here.

Wishing you a smooth transition!

 

 

Written By:


Community Suicide Prevention Coordinator

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