Transition: The Way Through Change – Part 2 Endings Letting Go of the Old

| March 16, 2015 | Comments (1)

“What we call the beginning is often the end and to make an end is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from.” ~ T.S. Eliot, “Little Gidding

In Part 1 of Transition: The Way Through I described the 3 stages of the transition process . In Part 2 we are talking about Endings and letting go of the old.

Life is a series of transitions. A transition could be any inner shift resulting from a change in your external world such as a change of career, personal relationship, a promotion, divorce, retirement, change in fortune, a health challenge, the loss of a loved one, or any change in your inner world such as a sudden shift in your understanding of how the world works.

Every transition begins with an Ending. We cannot begin a new project or a new stage of life until we have released our hold on “the way things were” and accepted the loss of past behaviors, attitudes, beliefs, hopes and fears. This is true for any area of life that you don’t fit any more, or it doesn’t fit you.

In life we are constantly experiencing Endings. As you move through life you will experience some defining moments when you must respond to something that has shown up on your path. Some Endings we move through without much thought, and others trouble us greatly because we misunderstand them. We confuse them with finality, that there is an “end” without the vision of a new beginning. Since we are frightened by the uncertainty of change and fear of the unknown, we desperately yearn for the known in the forms of control and manipulation.

Endings are characterized by:
– Feeling a sense of loss of being disoriented
– Feeling disappointed, angry, powerless
– Questioning old ways and what was
– Questioning self-worth

When change occurs, something ends. There is loss. The old situation—and who we were in that situation—no longer exists. When the change is a “good” one, we experience loss. When the old ways may have been bad, hurtful, or unpleasant, we may grieve the past and become angry, frightened, sad or confused. But mourning this loss, rather than avoiding it, is the first step toward transitioning to something new.

So how do we manage Endings? We manage endings through the grieving process. This is the process described in Part 1 of Transition: The Way Through Change .

As we go through an Ending, there are several traps we can fall into:
– Ignoring the grieving process
– Retreating to “business as usual”
– Thinking the change is your responsibility
– Thinking everyone experiences change the same and not knowing why others don’t understand

There are several things that you can do that will help move you through this stage:
– Mark the ending with a ritual or celebration
– Look at the loss behind the loss, what you will most miss
– See the future as building on the past in a new and improved way
– Recognize that endings and the accompanying feelings of endings are natural

Watch for Part 3 of Transition: The Way Through Change – Neutral Zone: There’s Nothing to Hang Onto, to be posted soon.
Live the Possibilities!!

©2015 Patricia Rubino

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Category: Empowerment

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  1. […] with traps you can fall into and trips for getting through this stage. You can read this post at […]

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