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Navigating Change: Growing through Transition

Ever found yourself in a state of transition that you didn't see coming? I have. It's a bit like what happens in your mind when you've added an extra task to your already endless to-do list, heading into a new job, or even planning to expand your family. William Bridges once said that change is what happens on the outside, while transition is the inner journey we go through to get used to the new situation. Change is quick, but transition...well, that takes as long as it takes. And let me tell you, I've been through a lot of changes in my time.

I'm sure many of you can relate. Whether it's getting married, starting a family, starting a new job, or moving to a new country, life is full of transitions. I never really paid much attention to the inner turmoil that comes with experiencing something major – a permanent change. It's like something shifts inside of you, and suddenly everything is different. I wish I could say that I handled the transitions into married life, parenthood, or a new culture with grace, but let's be real here. I might have been prepared with the baby gear, workplace wardrobe, and new “we” lingo, but stuff like adapting to the organizational context of a different culture; meal planning to survive a busy lifestyle with kids and a full-time job? Yeah, that didn't happen as promptly as I would've liked. Slow learner? Absolutely. But here's the thing – I am learning, and that's why I'm putting these words out here today.

The psychological process that comes with transition is no joke. If we don't understand what's going on inside our heads, we're in for a rough ride when unexpected situations come our way. So, whether we are packing our bags to move to a new country or gearing up for another new chapter in life, we must recognize the mental adjustments we'll need along the way. Here's one: it helps to develop a growth mindset, instead of sticking with a fixed mindset. A growth mindset encourages the belief that you can continue to grow and develop yourself, while a fixed mindset keeps you stagnant, thinking that your basic qualities are permanent and cannot be improved upon. Embracing a growth mindset has been a game-changer for me, ditching the fixed mindset to adapt to life's curveballs. I can tell you, it's a game worth playing.

The quote below captures this well:

“Why waste time proving over and over how great you are, when you could be getting better? Why hide deficiencies instead of overcoming them? Why look for friends or partners who will just shore up your self-esteem instead of ones who will also challenge you to grow? And why seek out the tried and true, instead of experiences that will stretch you? The passion for stretching yourself and sticking to it, even (or especially) when it’s not going well, is the hallmark of the growth mindset. This is the mindset that allows people to thrive during some of the most challenging times in their lives.”

― Carol S. Dweck, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success

If you're facing a change in your circumstances and want to set yourself up for success, here are a few mindset shifts you may need to make. The first is to let go of the fear of failure. It's important to recognize that setbacks and challenges are a natural part of the growth process. Embracing a mindset that sees failure as an opportunity for learning and growth can empower you to take risks and pursue new opportunities with confidence. By shifting from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset, you can approach change with resilience and a willingness to adapt to new circumstances.

Another important mindset change is to let go of the need for perfection. Society often places immense pressure on women to meet unrealistic standards, leading to feelings of self-doubt and inadequacy. Embracing a growth mindset involves recognizing that mistakes and imperfections are a part of the journey to success. By letting go of the need for perfection, you can cultivate self-compassion and resilience, allowing you to navigate transitions with greater ease and confidence.

Letting go of a fixed mindset and embracing a growth mindset starts with cultivating a sense of curiosity and openness to new possibilities. Rather than dwelling on past limitations or rigid expectations, you can adopt a mindset that is open to learning, exploring, and expanding your horizons. By embracing a growth mindset, you can approach change and transitions with optimism and creativity, tapping into your innate potential to thrive and flourish in the face of change.

I'm here to encourage you on your journey. Let's grow together!!



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