Any change in life can be unsettling. Sometimes we think we’re heading in one direction and then, suddenly, we have to adjust to a new situation. These shifts may or may not be welcome, but uncertainty is one of the certainties we all face. The good news is that if we can fully face reality during these periods, we have a great opportunity for growth.
At key milestones we get a special luxury when it comes to change – we know it’s coming. Big events like graduating high school, seeking job training, pursuing college, entering the workforce, starting a family, changing jobs, empty nesting, and retiring are all examples of events that often come with advance notice. These big transitions offer a chance for big growth.
For me, the coming end of college sparked a close look into a future career. A few years later, expecting our first child pushed me to look deeply inward and re-engage with spirituality. Although these periods were sometimes difficult, I benefited greatly from the opportunity to focus on big questions.
Looking Backward Can Help Us Move Forward
One of the advantages of having time to plan for a change is that we can think about how we got to where we are. Important periods of change naturally lead to a desire to review our life. And often this is a chance to detect restlessness, which can be a sign we are ready for authentic spiritual change.
This is a good time to get back to the big questions of our life. You may ask, “What has my life been preparing me to do?” Sometimes we don’t see the significance of certain moments and people in our lives until later. But when we do reflect back on how everything has impacted our development to date, the experience can be illuminating.
Significant upcoming changes and looking back can both put us in a negative frame of mind. It can be helpful to remember to find the silver lining. Knowing that in every situation there is something for us to learn and a way forward can help us remain positive and stay in a synchronistic flow. Then we are free to use intuitive guidance in our decision making.
So often we get swept up by all of our daily tasks and constant pressures from digital sources that we don’t take the time to see the big picture. Maybe you’re happy with the direction your life is going, or maybe it feels like you have gotten off track. Either way, once you know where you are coming from, you are better prepared to decide where to go.
Find The Freedom In Your Choices
We don’t always realize it or take advantage, but in any given moment we have an almost infinite number of choices available. It really is up to us to decide what to do with each moment. Every day is a chance to start building the future that we want for ourselves. While we are already in a state of flux, why not take advantage and make conscious evolution a priority?
This incredible freedom can be paralyzing. How do we choose the best path forward? What is the best use of our talent and interest? How will we make it all happen? Who will be there to help us?
Some combination of looking back on what we’ve been prepared to do and noticing present synchronicities can be our guide. When we centre ourselves, share the truth of our search with others, and expect synchronicities in our interactions, we give ourselves the best chance to notice important messages. From there, it’s up to us to take action and keep moving along the path opening before us.
Big Transitions Are Big Opportunities
Making any change, big or small, can be difficult. And the choice about how we handle tough times is ours to own. It is important to take time to deal with our feelings at these key junctures. Managing stress and taking care of ourselves is a prerequisite to positive change. At least for me, major life changes have been a good chance to refocus on my health.
Once we’re ready, it may be helpful to focus on the excitement of a new adventure and adopt a hopeful attitude. Just because we don’t know exactly what is waiting for us doesn’t mean we need to live in fear. Whatever hopes and goals we have are available to us. It is no accident that we are exactly where we are. What could be more fun?
Now is the time to dream big. Sometimes it is hard to admit to ourselves what it is that we really want. There are so many pressures that we face and so many people we feel responsible to that we don’t dare to recognize our desires. The beauty of big change is that it gives us big opportunities to pursue new goals or rededicate to old ones.
Enjoy The Ride
One of my favourite quotes is from Lama Surya Das and encourages us to “be there while getting there.” Having an end in mind is a good way to start, but we can’t forget to enjoy the unfolding moments in between now and the finish line. Keeping a light, fresh approach can keep us from getting too serious and squeezing the fun and spontaneity out of life.
Whatever next big event there is in your life, use it as a chance to grow. It is always the right time to become fully aware of, and focused on, your path. But, big transitions are a natural opportunity to dig deeper. Why not make the most of it?
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