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Feeling Stuck? Five Tips for Managing Life Transitions

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/07/16/well/mind/managing-life-transitions.html

nytimes.com

Feeling Stuck? Five Tips for Managing Life Transitions
Whatever the wolf is that disrupts your story, here are ways to emerge as the hero.

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The Three Phases Of Life Transitions

The Three Phases Of Life Transitions

In the face of a crisis, we feel chaotic and out of control. The transition comes in three phases:

  1. The Long Goodbye, in which we see our old self go.
  2. The Messy Middle, where we shed our old habits and embrace new ones.
  3. The New Beginning, where we take a ‘rebirth’.

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Identifying Emotions During Life Transitions

  • Be aware of your emotions such as fear, sadness and shame.
  • Writing down your feelings or doing certain rituals or activities to cope up with the loss is a great way to transition your life.
  • A ritualistic gesture becomes a statement and a metaphor for your emotions to take a physical form.

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The Process Of Letting Go

Shedding of something we have long clung to, like a certain mindset, delusion, habit or dream, is part of the messy middle.

It clears the unwanted parts of your life, creating space for something new to blossom.

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Being Creative During Life Setbacks

Responding with creativity makes us handle the ‘lifequake’ with ease.

Writing poetry/prose, cooking, painting or dancing makes us talk to our inner butterfly that is now ready to sprout the wings of growth.

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Rewriting Your Life Story

We all crave for meaning and fulfilment in our lives. A crisis provides us with a way to rewrite our life story and become something we always wanted.

Almost all the great successful people recall the ‘lifequakes’ they have had in their lives that shaped them, while they stand on the podium to collect an award or a recognition.

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Transition is difficult

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Transition, as an in-between state

Transition is also called liminality by psychologists - a state where you are neither in the state you left nor entirely in your new state. This in-between state creates an identity crisis, even in good transitions.

But they are really a predictable and integral part of life and happen regularly. Author Bruce Feiler interviewed hundreds of people and found that a major life change happens, on average, every 12 to 18 months. Even huge collective transitions such as the pandemic occur with regularity.

In retrospect, most transitions are seen as positive

In hindsight, even the unwanted transitions are usually seen to have been a success.

Research shows that we tend to see past events as net positives over time. Even the most challenging transitions have some positive fruit. It may just take some time to see it.

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Restarting the economy

Restarting the economy

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The proposed three-phase plan will allow many businesses to open in the first phase.

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Partial reopening

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Offices might operate in rotating shifts, but other businesses could have a harder time. Restaurants may have tight profit margins even in better times. Operating at half capacity may mean working at a loss.

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The symptoms

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The virus is more violent with the elderly, the very young and with individuals that have a weak immune system. The majority of those infected however recover after a few days.

Spreading the virus

Coughs or sneezes from an infected person are the most likely to spread the virus. So it's essential to follow basic hygiene rules:

  • Wash your hand often during the day.
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