The losses that change brings

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Life does not stay the same. It changes. You finish a job, or start a new one. You move house. You become a parent. Your child leaves home. You begin a new relationship. A relationship ends. A loved one dies.  A grandchild is born.

It is certain that your circumstances will change.  As they do, you will gain new experiences, new relationships, new opportunities and even new skills; changes bring many gifts. 

Change also heralds losses.  Even with a change you look forward to, there will be things from the past that you no longer enjoy.  These losses call you to mourn them, it’s important to acknowledge what you no longer have, even when you are pleased with what has now begun.

Oftentimes though, the hardest part of change is the psychological transition.  When something out there in your life is different, you have to adjust. Unlike the change, your adjustment is not instant.  It takes time.

Old routines and patterns no longer work.  New ways of fitting things in, of behaving, of relating have to be experimented with and established.  Several might need to be tried before you find what now fits. 

This period of transition can be very unsettling.  It pulls from under you things you took for granted, and it can feel as if your stability and certainty have gone.  No matter that they were an illusion in an ever changing life anyway, it is still unsettling.

Socially, it's perhaps not seen as acceptable to say 'I have a new baby and I resent my loss of free time' or 'I have a great new job but I miss my old one' but these things may well be true.

Feelings are not simple, we are not uncomplicated.  It is normal to feel happy, sad, excited and regretful all at the same time, its OK to have mixed emotions and to have a range of perspectives on things.

The best thing you can do when change de-stabilises you is to be honest with yourself about your whole experiencing of it.  Note the contradictions, complications, and confusion. Be with the losses and the intensities of feelings. Let yourself move through your transition over time, knowing that this too is changing, and will not last forever.

If life has brought up a transition that you are struggling to get through alone, then reach out and find a Psychotherapist to help you bear it.  It just might help.

Go to the profile of Fe Robinson, Psychotherapist

Fe Robinson, Psychotherapist

I am here to help you thrive, whatever life brings. I offer Psychotherapy, EMDR therapy and Couples Counselling to clients based in Durham. I am UKCP Accredited and an EMDR Europe Practitioner, and offer Clinical Supervision to counsellors and psychotherapists locally. I have worked in private practice, the NHS, and in charitable organisations, with a wide range of clients and conditions.

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