How to cope with change and transition
I write this at the end of another day. After the end of another day of family, work, career and the so many things that I have to juggle on a day to day. After I am done with this article, I will hop into bed, get some good sleep and hit the road running yet again tomorrow. Amidst the day to day balls that I have juggle I find myself amidst a lot of change and transition, how to cope with all this? How to try and do all things, be all to all the people that need me I wonder without “things falling apart”?
The first thing is to accept that the only constant in life in change. People will come into your life as others leave it, as babies are born so will people surely die, as others receive that phone call, “You’re hired.” Others on the other end will receive a letter, “You’re fired.” We lose some, we win others, as surely as the sun rises from the East and sets to the West, change and transition in life is inevitable. Do not be in denial, accept that change has happened in your life. It is okay to feel overwhelmed and anxious about change. However, evaluate your level of control. Embrace change. Life must continue. When amidst a period of change and transition keep up your regular schedule as much as possible even as you try to incorporate change in your life. My morning walks and runs, “me time” have been a great source of comfort and solace during this period of change and transition. I have always loved reading and fashion, so I am spending a lot of time reading, window shopping in the numerous fashion outlets in my beloved Nairobi. My mother has always been a great source of encouragement to me so I find myself huddling a lot with her.
Eat healthy as much as possible and incorporate exercise into your routine. To cope with immense change and transition ones body needs to be as healthy as possible, exercise is a great stress reliever due to the “happy hormones” that the body produces, endorphins. Practise self love and care
As you watch the physical diet, watch your mental diet. What are the thought patterns racing through your mind? Are they the thoughts that build or are they those that destroy? Seek support from trusted friends and family. At this point I need to acknowledge a dear Auntie, my campus roommate T.A, my friend A.M who have been rocks and pillars in my life amidst all the changes and transitions. These three individuals have prayed, laughed and cried with me these past few months. Conversations sometimes on hours on end. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Seek the trusted people that you can vent to your inner fears, successes, wins and struggles. Social media audience is not the place to use as your personal sounding board or deep intimacies of your heart, have real physical conversations with trusted people. If push comes to shove seek the help of a counsellor. Which leads me to the next point.
Back away from social media if it is impacting on your perceptions in life. Everyone on social media is happy in life and having a good time, except you or so it seems. Everyone is fighting a battle that they are not wiling to share on social media which may make one have the illusion that it is only them undergoing tumultuous change or transition. If you need to minimize your interactions on social media to get your life back in order so be it. You will come back more rejuvenated.
Make a list of the things that you need to do as you transition in this period of our life. I have found a daily, weekly, monthly check list very handy and this has kept me organized because if I try to remember everything that I need to do with my own mind it may get overwhelming. On that a related note one needs to set goals on what ones needs to do during this period of change and transition.
Any change whether perceived negative or positive has a positive to it; when one loses a job suddenly for example it makes one more enterprising, it makes one value their job when they are back in the job market. Losing a leader in your family, means that there is a gap that must be filled, a new leader will emerge who offers a different perspective of life. Now that my beloved father, my sounding board in life is gone, though I terribly miss his wisdom and counsel – I am becoming more fearless and more enterprising in day to day situations or making decisions. I have also put things into perspective sieving the things and the people that matter the most. I am growing in other ways.
Take a break and enjoy the things that bring joy in your life. Make time for fun and laughter to help you cope. Be present. Enjoy the moment. Trust yourself, look at the past and remember situations that you have overcome. You are stronger than you think you are. That will give you the impetus to forge on. Realize that during periods of transition, change is inevitable. Be flexible. It may have to do with changes in finances, changes in relationships, changes in perspectives in life. This is a great learning for me that things do not always go as planned.
Last but not least for those people of faith that believe that there is a Divine hand in our lives, trust that there is a God who holds all in His masterplan. Take it one day at a time. Wishing you all a good transition for those undergoing change in their lives.
We welcome February – the universal month of love.
© Kwambie Nyambane,
Lead Writer and Founder,
Wacha niKwambie blog, Kenya