What does it mean to be in transition? The dictionary defines transition as passage from one place, state, stage or subject to another; change. Transition can look different for each of us. Here are a few examples of transition; becoming an empty nester, changing careers, losing a job, starting a business, downsizing, moving to another location, losing a loved one, traveling to another country, living in another country, returning from a vacation or business trip, retirement, divorce, marriage, having children, graduating from college or graduate school, graduating from high school, and the list goes on.
Personally, I have experienced many transitions in my life. Here are some recent ones. Leaving a job with regular hours and a monthly paycheck to start my own business. I’ve been self employed before and am familiar with the challenges inherent in owning a business. In the past I have struggled with time management and self-management and now have some structures in place to help me with these issues. Erratic income is another part of being self employed. No matter how many classes, retreats, workshops I create, there is no guarantee I will fill them. So being OK with uncertainty is part of being an entrepreneur. Another transition I experienced last year had to do with launching my first website and becoming comfortable with facebook. It has been a gradual process with facebook and I have come to appreciate the benefits of social media as a valuable marketing tool. I am a fairly private person so launching my website and using facebook were a huge leap for me.
This brings me to the opportunities part of this post. There are always lessons and opportunities for growth when I go through a transition period. In my world the benefits far outweigh the challenges. Being self employed allows me to have a flexible schedule which I enjoy. It also gives me the opportunity to shop during the week when the stores are less crowded, avoid rush hour traffic, exercise during the day instead of before or after work, be creative and spontaneous, and work from home. Yes, there are obstacles during times of transition and there are also numerous chances to grow, stretch and take that next step into the unknown. Transition is full of unknowns and it can be a time of fear and uncertainty. The flip side, on the other hand, can be a time of excitement, inspiration, and delightful surprises. It’s all about perspective and how I choose to look at the transitions in my life.
What about you? How do you handle times of transition? What transition is looming on the horizon for you? What lessons have you learned when you have been in transition? Please share your experiences about transition. I would love to hear from you!