Life Transitions: How Do You Handle Them?

Aug 30, 2018, Written by Shannon Farris

 

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the definition of transition is “a passage from one stage, subject, or place to another”. Transitions can be abrupt, happening seemingly overnight or it can be a long and drawn out process.

I have noticed recently that a lot of people I know are going through some type of transition in their life.

Marriages.

Babies.

New Careers.

Graduations.

Retirement.

A week and a half ago, me and my husband became puppy parents to an adorable yellow lab named Pete. Having never had a pet before, it is safe to say it has been a bigger transition than I anticipated. I have googled “how to raise a puppy” more times than I would like to admit and have bombarded my friend who works for a vet with multiple texts of questions and concerns. While it has been fun, I have found myself wanting to fast forward to the part of where it’s easier, more comfortable and we have fully adjusted to this new lifestyle. If I could just get to the day where my dog is potty trained and does not think my hand is a chew toy.

I don’t necessarily handle transitions well. My anxiety builds of what’s to come and I struggle to let go of what was and embrace what will be. I could argue that most people don’t. We like our routine and we are comfortable with it, but change is inevitable and most times necessary.

Even the disciples did not like the idea of transition. In John 14 when Jesus was with them the night before his death and told them that he would no longer be physically with them, they were confused and their hearts were troubled. They didn’t understand and wanted to go with Him. Yet, we see Jesus promises them something new, the Holy Spirit to dwell within them an guide them. They had to let go of what they knew and were comfortable with and embrace what Jesus was promising them and that it would be to their benefit . (John 16:7-8)

Although this transition was for the disciples’ benefit, they could not see it at the time. They wanted to hold tight to what they knew and the idea of Jesus leaving them was very troubling.

So what transition in your life or business are you struggling with?

It may be a small, like moving over to a new email system for your company or restructuring the way you do meetings. It also could be a major transition, completely changing the vision or direction of your business.

Proactive Transitioning 

So instead of waiting for the transition dust to settle and you have adjusted to the new and are comfortable again, here are a few ways you can be proactive in seasons of transition.

Pray.

  • Continue to pray over your business and employees that work for you. Pray for wisdom as you make changes and move in new directions. In John 16, Jesus prayed over his disciples as he was about to leave them on earth. As followers of Christ, we have the opportunity to come before God and pray over our business, our family, and our friends.

Be present.

  • Be observant of how you and/or your staff are handling the transition, take notes of what can be done more smoothly for the next time or what was handled well. Try not to fall into the trap of constantly looking ahead to the comfortable and take this opportunity to learn and grow as a boss, employee, or team.

Don’t lost heart.

  • This may often be easier said than done, but often times we become filled with fear and anxiety when change comes upon. I go back to earlier in John 14:1 when Jesus tells the disciples “Let your hearts not be troubled..” This applies to us as well. Keep sight of the eternal picture in times of uncertainty and change. God cares for you and he cares for your business.

Life transitions can be hard, messy, long, short, full of hope, or a welcoming sight. Whatever transition you are going through, be mindful of what you or your business can take out of it during the process. As for me, I will enjoy adjusting and transitioning into a new lifestyle of being a responsible pet owner and give a little more grace to Pete the next time he mistakes my hand for his chew toy.

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Shannon Farris

Shannon graduated from Louisiana State University with a bachelor’s degree in Child and Family Studies in December of 2015. She began working full time at Crossroads in October of 2016. She is excited to be a part of a team who builds their foundation on Christ and desires that to be seen first in everything they do.

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