‘the process or a period of changing from one state or condition to another’
Our lives are filled with periods of change. There are ones deemed exciting: starting a new promising career, entering a new relationship, moving to a better home or city. And then there are changes we find more difficult, being let go from a job, losing a loved one, dealing with an illness.
It’s much easier to be present in the big moments, the exciting ones, the ones that stimulate all the good feelings. But what about the tough moments? The sad or angry ones? And the seemingly insignificant or mundane moments? We tend to want to escape during the challenging times. We reach for distractions and look to be anywhere but the uncomfortable.
Why is our approach to transitions important?
Because everything is in this moment.
The teacher, the lesson, your growth, it’s in this moment – if you’re not here, you’re missing it.
What does that even mean?
Let’s start with the most tangible. Your physical body is always talking to you, it’s sending messages all the time but you have to be aware. A headache, a sore neck, butterflies, a tight chest, a runny nose – sometimes we don’t notice them until they’ve gotten unbearable and at other times we just shrug them off:
“whatever” “it’ll pass” “it’s no big deal, I’m used to it”
But these are signs form the body that something is not in balance.
Your emotions are messengers too.
Joy is your right, if you’re feeling anything but that, pay attention, it’s trying to tell you where you’re out of alignment. The so called ‘negative’ emotions – sadness, anger, frustration, jealousy – we tend to supress them, hide them, wish them away, but while they’re uncomfortable, they’re also a gift.
We read signs in the weather, in politics, in relationships, in others, but we shy away from ourselves.
Why? It can be scary.
So what do we do?
Know that we don’t have to love it to explore it.
The point or the objetive isn’t to smile and be happy for anything difficult that comes our way. The point is to be aware of everything that comes up, to face it with curiosity instead of judgment and be willing to see what the lesson is.
There is room, there is space to hold the pain and the opportunity.
Recognize and reflect on the transitions in your past.
Consider your past. The challenging transitions in your life, the moments, days, weeks you may have spent wishing away instead of also recognizing the blessing that lay hidden. What did you learn from those times? How did they make you stronger? How are you better off today for having gone through them?
Be here, be willing.
As life goes on and you encounter the tough moments, the uncomfortable, the uncertain or the mundane – be still – still the body, deepen the breath and bring your awareness to where you feel unease in the body. Keep breathing deeply and try to relax the parts of the body that feel tight, unsettled. Do the best you can.
Now notice the feelings that come up, sadness? anger? frustration? Allow them to come up and out – find a safe space to write it out, scream, cry, punch a pillow, shake it out.
E-motions are energy in motion, keeping them pent up, contained, will only create more pressure later on.
Once you feel a release, a calming, then be willing – be willing to see more than the pain, be willing to see the growth, see the opportunity. You don’t have to work hard at it, and don’t expect an answer immediately. Just be willing.
Know you’re not alone.
I am constantly challenged by transitions in my life. I continue to remind myself that I am never done growing and so each of the tough moments in my life, the trying ones, the hands up in the air “why me?”, “why again?”, “please, not now” moments, they are here for a reason and so I keep recommitting to feeling all of it, to opening myself up instead of shutting down, to being willing. It’s hard but so worth it. Because with the growth comes more resilience, more love, more compassion, more calm. Know that I’m committed and finding my way along this journey with you and so are many, many others.
Be here, be willing, do the best you can, it is enough and so are you.