I see it and hear it everywhere. Women like myself who are new mothers, trying to balance happy healthy family life and our career. People getting married or divorced. Young women who are thinking about a career change and finding their life purpose and passion. Women in their wisdom years thinking about becoming mentors or supporting social enterprises. We all go through transitions. It is inevitable and they are meant to be soul-enriching. But there are times that it doesn’t feel that way.
I remember when my baby girl was about 5 or 6 weeks old, I was crying in the shower, thinking this endless drill of sleepless nights, constant feeding and nappy changing was never going to end. I was told that things will get easier with time, and I believed it too, but it just didn’t feel that way. Another time this happened was when my dad suddenly got diagnosed with a serious illness a few years back. I am the only child who lives thousands of miles away, that dark cloud on my head and heart was heavy and hard to breathe. I remember my immediate thoughts after my mum told me about dad’s diagnosis were something like this: What have I done for my life? What do I have to show for? Should I drop everything and move back home? And the internal dialogue went like this, rapidly: I haven’t got a baby yet, and I think he would like to become a grandpa, I better hurry! That chatter went on and on as you could imagine.
We all have experienced the dark nights of the soul, one way or the other. The only way to get out of the darkness is too look for the light. I got through the newborn period of my daughter and my dad made a full recovery. For some people, their marriage may not recover, or their transition is triggered by losing a loved one. The bottom line is though, we can get through it. We must. There are things in life that call us and ask us to show up for them. Therefore, if we fall, we must rise. If we were consumed by sadness, we must find our way back to life.
There are several ways that I think it may be helpful to share with you:
I never thought deeply and hardly about transition until I became a mother, but now I think about this a lot. Change is inevitable, and they can be good for us, but how we handle it makes all the difference. I know for sure in a time of transition, we will lean on something, whether it is faith and hope or fear and hopelessness. That decision matters. It matters a lot. If you don’t think you have enough faith or hope, lean on someone that has, someone that you trust. We are never alone. There are people around us and there are also professionals that can help. I say, pick your team in a time of transition.
Cultivate Calm and Stillness
I remember a concept in A Course In Miracles that says God talks to every one of us, but only
We need to turn up the volume of our inner voice. The best way I know is to have a regular meditation practice. Preferably every morning before everything else starts, spend at least 5-10 minutes to meditate, but if you can spare 30 – 45 mins, it will be even better. There are many great meditation guides and tools. I really enjoy the Oprah and Deepak Chopra meditation experiences, if you are new to meditation, it can be a great way to start. They also offer free experiences and resources as well.
I hear a lot of people talking about how authentic relationships form the foundation of true success. It certainly makes a lot of sense but considering we are living in a fast-paced information age, the interactions between people can feel highly transactional and impersonal. It is may be logistically easier for us to connect with people over geographical distance and time zone but it doesn’t always mean we feel emotionally closer to anyone at all.
Humans need connections with others, we are hardwired for that. We want heartfelt and positive connections. It fuels our soul. It will worth our while to be more mindful of our interaction with others online or in-person. When we are in transition, there will be days that are emotionally and physically challenging, and we may not like to show up to connect. But there are days that we will feel a little lighter or more capable, and that will be the time to reach out, to listen, to do good and remind others that you are here for them as they are here for you.
In my darkest hours, I always find this brings me a sense of comfort and purpose when I know I am helping and contributing to the world.
I hope my own 3 ways of dealing with transition are helpful for you too. My book Goddess with Many Faces is largely written for women in transition, as we all go through these times and yet we are all different in character and life experiences. I hope this blog can offer you some insights that can help you to navigate your life journey.
Stay true, laugh loud and shine now!
Here is a video I have recorded for this blog post:
You can also listen to the podcast episode for this topic below or on your favorite podcast catcher!