I’m still surprised by the reaction to my last two blogs.
The feedback I’m receiving from people reminds me of how much we crave honest conversations about the slings and arrows of adult life– myself included.
Writing about what I was experiencing put my personal transition on the map. I couldn’t unsay what I said after I pressed publish.
I’ve also reflected more on how our comfort level with experiencing a range of emotions impacts how we navigate through transitions. What’s OK to feel, and what’s OK to admit, and to whom?
Acknowledging feelings of vulnerability and sadness in the midst of change is a radical act. It goes off the public script of “I’m OK.”
We need to figure out a way to cope because going through changes at work can be brutal. When your organization restructures, you can end up in an organization that doesn’t fit and work for a boss you don’t like or worse, doesn’t like you.
I’ve experienced all of these dilemmas over my decades-long career. Looking back, I navigated successfully through each of those career crises and found the silver lining. I don’t always know what good news is until much later looking in the rearview mirror.
The first step is not denying or minimizing what is happening or shying away from facing the truth about what you are losing. In the words of some great philosopher “The truth will set you free, but first, it makes you miserable.”
Writing my blogs made the fact I’m going through some changes real. Some are of my changes are work related, and some are personal. And in the big picture, nothing earth-shattering. Just ordinary life continuing to unfold. But it woke me up.
The payoff for not hiding my head in the sand is I’m regaining perspective. I’m not reacting so intensely. I’m kind of over the hand-wringing stage. A new normal is emerging. I’m officially embracing what’s next. I’m not fighting the truth things could work out better than I expected.
And this transition is also inviting me to pay attention to how I’m looking after myself. I can’t afford to be sloppy with my self-care. I need to stay grounded. I’ve recommitted to regular exercise, meditation, eating well and keeping a gratitude list. For me, making space to “be” is a must during the transition. And so is staying connected with my tribe.
I know I’m progressing because I’m not fighting against where my life is flowing. I’m opening up and loosening up on what I think I know, or how it is supposed to look.
I’m also discerning about what I want to carry into my next chapter. I looked around my home office a couple of weeks ago and noticed the clutter in my office. I’m not a pack rat, and I don’t collect ornaments, but I do collect books and binders and resource material.
I’m shocked at how hard it is to let go of things I don’t use, but feel some comfort knowing they are within reach. But it’s time, and I’m plowing through the clutter, keeping what still is useful and chucking what isn’t away.
And it is easier to let go of the old when it is in the service of a bigger vision. This last year I’ve been refining the focus of my work. Looking at what I’ve collected, together, it all represents different work personas I’ve worn over the years. It is time to prune and make space to claim a bigger dream. I’ll keep you posted.