Dealing With Change: Transition is not a place on the map
I’ve always thought of transition as the place between here and there. A place of change–somewhere between where you have been and where you are going. But my left-brain tells me the math doesn’t quite add up. And my right brain says:
You are here.
If you are traveling across the U.S., for example, you can look at a map from New York (where you have been) to San Diego (where you are going), and see the route you will need to take. But at any given moment, you are somewhere. Perhaps you are still in New York but your bags are packed and ready to go. Maybe you have made it as far as Chicago where your connecting flight has been delayed due to weather. In either case, you can point to an exact location on the map to find yourself.
Transition is not really a place between here and there; it’s actually more like a place between thereA and thereB. Consider this:
thereA = where you’ve been; behind you
thereB = where you are going; ahead of you
Where you stand at any given moment is still here.
What’s the trouble with transition and why does it feel so unsettling?
noun a passage, movement or change from one state, place or condition to another
verb to change or move from one state, place or condition
Transition is movement
What is happening when you feel like you’re in transition is that you are feeling movement. The place where you stand (here) is temporary and you feel the unsettled motion of heading to or from somewhere else (there).
In transition does not have to feel like a bad place. It takes our mind and bodies time to adjust to movement and change. Whether you are moving away from something significant – a hometown, a job, old relationships, outmoded behaviors; or moving toward something significant – a new home or family, self-employment, conscious living – you need to allow your mind and body to adjust to the change.
Dealing with Change
We are in constant motion, changing, growing, learning, expanding. Our time on this planet is also, inevitably, temporary. But this journey of transition does not have to be stressful. It can, in fact, be full of joy and peace. It just takes some creativity and the ability to acknowledge where you are on the map of life. It takes reflection, contemplation and a little faith. The same formula that goes into beginning any writing or art project.
Slowing down long enough to jot down our thoughts and reflections serve, not only to record but, to discover the direction in which we are moving. It requires engaging your right brain – and often your heart – because all the plotting and planning doesn’t ease the discomfort of change. So join me as we work through ways to find comfort in transition.
For now just remember – You Are Here. Let’s work with that for a while.