Traversing transitions is a constant in our lives, and perhaps especially so for those of us in midlife. But really, if you think about it, life is filled with flux, not matter what stage you’re at. The simple fact of the movement of our planet means that our
environment is changing all the time.
Right now, for example, whether you are in the northern hemisphere where autumn is arriving, or in the southern half of the globe and moving from winter to spring, you are experiencing the start of a seasonal transition as you read this post. The thing about transition times is that they offer us challenges – and in each challenge there are also profound opportunities. That is because:
Every transition presents us with a chance to reflect and to create a new beginning
At each and every transition point, you can choose to consciously consider what you want to let go of as you move ahead. Or maybe there's something that you’ve learned that you'd like to integrate more fully into your life. Those are the things that you carry with you on your journey.
Transition points are like turnings in the road. So, here’s an example of what you might do, if you have a habit or discipline that you want to maintain as you traverse a transition. Let’s say you’ve had a healthy and energizing routine, all summer, of getting outside for a run in the morning or the evening.
Seasonal changes can sometimes make it challenging to maintain the rhythms of your day. Here in the north, the onset of fall will mean a shortening of the days – and that can have a big impact on your outdoor exercise regimen. Or maybe it’s the start of the new school year that introduces new demands that squeeze your schedule.
Sometimes those helpful and healthy summertime routines just seem impossible to sustain as fall gets underway.
So, when you notice yourself feeling the impossibility of it all, this is when it's crucial to remember that you always have the power to make your own choices. So take a step back and review your schedule and your priorities. You may find it helpful to ask
yourself some basic questions, like:
*What is the impact of this transition on the routines you want to keep going for yourself?
*Are there things that you can flex or let go of to make sure that these parts of your routine can continue?
*Are there ways to accomplish the activity that you’ve found helpful but do it in a different way?
For example, could you go to the gym and swim, in the morning, rather than running outside? Another thing to keep in mind is that it takes time (usually about a month) to build a new habit. So, for several weeks, as you are engaging in your new routine, try planning your schedule on paper, even if you don't normally do that.
Writing down your plan will reinforce the choices you are making. You remind yourself that this is something you value, even as other aspects of your life may be in flux. This extra affirmation of your commitment will help you stick to your routine until it becomes familiar to you.
Times of transition can really throw us off track if we experience them as something that "happens to" us. And even though changes aren’t always in our control, the more mindfully we approach them (remembering, always, that our response to change is our choice), the more likely we are to feel satisfied and empowered in our lives.
So, think of transitions as passages to be navigated, and of yourself as having the helm AND the map. In doing that, you tap into your power, wisdom and experience to make the most of these rich times.
Reprinted with permission from Paula Eder, PhD, The Time Finder ExpertPaula is an internationally-known coach and published author who specializes in mentoring heart-based entrepreneurs and small business owners, from the inside out, to align their core values and energy withtheir time choices and behaviors so they make more money, create more freedom, and find more time.
To learn more about Paula's unique, Heart-Based Time ManagementTMSystem and begin your transformational journey, sign up for her Finding Time Success Kit at http://thetimeschool.com/template