What Now? Making the Most of Major Life Changes!
Nothing is permanent except change. You’d think we’d all be used to it by now. But change sure does freak most of us out.
Then you have life changes. Major life changes. You know, the stuff that rocks foundations and changes everything.
Perhaps you’re experiencing one or more of the following:
- Marriage, moving in together
- Divorce, separation, break-up
- Death of someone close to you
- Changing jobs, losing a job retirement
- Buying a house, relocating
- Starting a family
- Serious illness or injury
- Financial issues (dramatic change in either direction)
The changes listed above are in a league of their own. They offer us opportunities to grow and learn more about ourselves. Hey, if change is inevitable, we should do our best to make the most of it!
How to Make the Most of Major Life Changes
1. Prepare to be depressed/scared/overwhelmed
Fasten your seat belt. It’s going to be a bumpy ride. Prepare, prepare, prepare. Do what you need to do so you’re not taken by surprise. How do we do that? Read on.
2. Take care of yourself
Self-care is a basic choice in life. In the midst of major life changes, it becomes a life saver. Consider:
- Regular sleep patterns
- Healthy eating habits
- Daily exercise and activity
- Stress management
The best version of you is needed. The best version of you is only possible if you start with the basics.
3. Create a support system
Do you have friends and family you can rely on? Take out a pen and paper. List the people in your life. Now, honestly appraise their role in your circle. In big moments, you deserve to be surrounded with support. That won’t happen by accident.
4. Find a role model
You’re not the first person to face life changes. There’s no need to reinvent the wheel. Find yourself a role model and investigate what they did to get through life changes. There are limitless lessons out there to be accessed.
5. Don’t get caught up with deadlines
Don’t let anyone tell you how fast or how slow you should be moving. Each of us has to handle things in our own way. Yes, find a role model. Learn from others. Make sure your true self shines.
6. Remember your past victories
Tap into your own history to find examples of your power. You have more resources at hand than you may realize. Do everything you can to avoid the “I can’t” mindset. Accept the challenge and rise up.
7. Practice mindfulness
Try slowing things down. Take your life down to smaller, easily digestible bites. Be present with each moment. Give yourself a break from all the regret and doubt. You’re working on a plan to deal with upheaval. But every plan is made up of small steps.
8. “Write” this chapter in your autobiography
Think of all the life stories you’ve read. Every book—or movie, for that matter—contains chapters or scenes of hardship and triumph. It’s an inescapable part of the human experience. You will get through this. One day, you will look back on it. How will this chapter read?
When life changes, we must change with it
Plenty of people remain skeptical of therapy and counselling. They’re resistant to the idea of asking for help. Well, as everything else changes, your opinion on therapy and counseling can change too.
Nobody’s perfect. We’re all human and we can all keep learning. Therapy and counselling sessions form a safe space where we can ponder, dig, and prepare. Working with a professional who is trained as a therapist, counsellor and life-coach is an excellent launching pad towards making the most of major life changes, particularly if they can teach you tools to become more resilient to the changes and stresses of life.