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5 Ways to Prepare for a Life Change

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They say that all good things must come to an end sometimes. But the truth is, ALL things – “good” OR “bad” – must eventually end, and there are certain things you can do to prepare for the transition that naturally occurs afterwards.

Whether I want to admit it or not, my Epic Road Trip is rapidly coming to an end. Even if (when) I decide to pick up and hit the road again, this particular adventure is over. The fact that I’ll be pulling back into New York is not the only reason I say this; it’s a feeling.

A feeling that I’m done, and a feeling that it’s time to shift my energy into something more introverted.

The thought of stopping is both exhilarating and terrifying. On one hand, I know I’m ready to slow down and plant my roots somewhere. But on the other hand, there are all of these questions.

But that’s to be expected: There are ALWAY’S questions when we’re entering into unknown territory.

Even when I left jobs and relationships that I was miserable in, as the ending approached, it was terrifying – so much so that I often found myself walking away in tears.

Familiarity is comforting, and it’s easy to become comfortable with being uncomfortable, especially as we’re nosediving towards the end.

But there are definitely ways to ease the transition, and to make the situation less painful.

So here are 5 ways to prepare yourself when there’s about to be a big change in your life:

1. Be Clear
Over the last few years, I’ve ended a lot of things – relationships, jobs, projects. But one thing I made sure of in every situation is that I was clear about why I was doing what I was doing.

I’m ending this road trip because I’m tired; because I need a break; because energetically I want to go inward for a while, rather than physically moving all the time; and because my goals have changed.

The more clear you can be with why you are ending something, the easier it will be in the eleventh hour when the alarms are blaring, screaming at you to turn around, go back and reconsider the change you’re about to make.

2. Practice Self-Care
During every major change I’ve made, I’ve gotten sick. Like, really sick. Why? Because endings are stressful, which means your immune system is going to be working overtime.

This past week, I’ve been preparing to make the final journey North towards New York. Sure enough, I’ve been knocked out with a low-grade-something-that-sucks.

Rather than fight it, I decided to listen to what my body is telling me and take the necessary steps to ensure a healthy and happy road trip up the East Coast. How?

I’ve let myself get more rest; I’ve been diligent with my diet; and I’ve been slowing down, staying in and taking space.

Self-care is key, and prevention is the best way to go. So when you know somethings about to end, be proactive and set your immune system up for success by taking vitamins, eating right and exercising. Listen to your body.

And give yourself time to transition. Don’t jump right into the next thing. Part of self-care is understanding that you are human and you can only take so much.

3. Express How You Feel
The closer I get to New York, the more I feel the need to process my feelings.

That’s what happens when something ends; we want to reflect upon everything that’s happened in the past and we often feel anxious about what’s going to happen next. This is why life coaches, therapists, psychologist, best friends and Chai Bears exist. This is also why people journal.

It’s healthy to process how we feel, and the more we try to stuff our emotions down, the bigger they become. So get it out!

Write about it. Talk about. Even sing about it if you have to. (I’ve been known to dance it out sometimes…. in my car…. with Chai Bear… Just sayin’)

4. Surround Yourself With Support
Even when we’re clear about why we’re making a change, it definitely doesn’t help to have unsupportive people around; you know – those people that question EVERYTHING you’re doing.

Find people that understand you and spend more time with them. They’re the ones that are going to be there when you start to panic at 3 am on a random Sunday night a week before you’re about to drive back to NY.

Or 5 minutes before you’re about to quit your job.
Or moments before you’re about to file for divorce.

This is not the time to allow negative nelly to enter your personal space.

This support network will also be there for you during and after the transition. They’ll be there to catch you when you fall, to nudge you forward and to gently whisper, “You’ve got this.”

5. Focus on the Beginning
This Epic Road Trip is ending. But that just means that I’m creating space for something even MORE epic.

I’m choosing to focus on the BEGINNING that will occur once I’ve made the transition out of Epic-Road-Trip-Mode. I have an idea about what I’d like to see happen next, but who knows where the road will take me?

Every ending is the start of something new. Even if you don’t have a clear idea of what that next step is, that can be an awesome adventure in itself.

So in those moments when you feel uneasy about what’s going to happen next, remember that you’re in the driver’s seat; and at any moment, you can change directions.

Endings don’t have to be overwhelming, and transitions don’t have to be painful. With a little preparation you can ensure clear open highways ahead.

You’ve got this!

Are you about to make a big change in YOUR life? Tell me about it in the comments below!

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

BRAD December 20, 2013 at 3:20 pm

I came across your on Milt’s facebook. I clicked on the link on your page to get here. I just wanted to say that sometime recently I seen the picture at the beginnig where your sitting and looking out over the valley. I can’t remember where I seen it but I do remember it vividly because I thought it was so beautiful. I want to make the move to Alaska and experience living off the grid. My dream is just that. I wouldn’t be bothered with all of the hustle and bustle of the gotta have , gotta get it now life that goes on in the lower 48 so to speak. That’s the big change I want to make. I also am going through a life devastating change, the morning after Christmas last year my 17 year old son named Austin, didn’t wake up, he went to be with Jesus. The 1 year anniversary is approaching and it is not easy at all. People say oh it will get easier with time, no, no, no! It didn’t do any such of a thing, it only has gotten worse. I love that boy more than anything on this earth! I am eagerly awaiting the day that I am in Heaven with Austin and Jesus! What a day that will be! Anyway Merry Christmas! Are you a part of Unlimitedyoueducation? Just wondering, that’s how I know Milt. God Bless You!

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Victoria Gigante December 22, 2013 at 7:01 pm

Hi Brad,
Thank you for sharing a bit about your story. It sounds like you’re going through a difficult time right now. It also sounds like you have a very clear idea of one major change you can start to put into motion to get back to YOU (i.e. moving to Alaska).
So what’s holding you back from making the move? That’s what I would love to explore with you – then I’d love to help you put that change into action.
Regarding your son Austin: Forget what everyone else says. Let your feelings run through you, without judgement. Cry loudly. Scream at the top of your lungs. And then smile, for you have experienced the purest form of love.
Love and loss are two sides of the same coin – and your beautiful son Austin has allowed you to feel this. As we rapidly approach Christmas, I’m sure you can also feel him watching over you. And you know what Brad? The best thing you can do for him at this point is LIVE. Live the best life you can. Live vibrantly. FEEL fully. I’m sure that’s what he’d want for you, no?
Sending you peace & calm,
Victoria
P.S. No, I am not a part of Unlimitedyoueducation.

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Tammi January 16, 2014 at 2:12 pm

Hi Victoria! I’m struggling with a new start right now. Found you on tinybuddha.com and your article spoke directly to me. Over the past 3 yrs, my life gone straight downhill. I used to own a successful Wireless Phone business. When I sold that, I put all my money into a new Paint Your Own Pottery venture. I was still in the “wireless phone” income thinking that lead the new business straight into the gutter, along with both my husbands and my credit. You have to sell a heck of a lot more cups than cell phones to make the same amount of money!! Living in a town of 5500 people didn’t help matters any. Before I could process what happened, I was offered a REALLY great job in a local school district! Wow, that’s amazing and right on time! Only, I didn’t realize I was being placed in an office with a bully who harassed me for almost 2 yrs straight! I was already struggling with my confidence and self worth considering we ended up filing bankruptcy last year. I filed 3 grievances over the course of the past year and finally walked out on Jan 3rd and never went back. Now I am (trying) to patiently wait and see if I get approved for unemployment compensation so I can have some time to get some traction before moving forward. Usually when you quit a job, you automatically don’t qualify, but if you have grounds (which I think I do), you have a chance. But what we feel we deserve and what we get are often two different things. I know God has a plan for me….I just hope I can keep my head above water in the meantime and I get some time to calm down and think clearly. Thanks for the wonderful words of advice. I will take them to heart! Bless you!

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Victoria Gigante January 16, 2014 at 4:06 pm

Tammi,

Thank you for sharing your story. It definitely sounds like you’ve been on quite the adventure! I know you wrote that your life has gone straight downhill over the last few years, and that you’re struggling with a new start. Perhaps a bit of a refrain about how you view yourself might help?

When I read your story, I read about a person that’s extremely strong. You went out on a limb and were fearless with that pottery business; and even though you eventually decided it wasn’t working for you, you gained a ton of knowledge and experience that has only made you stronger and wiser. Before that door even closed completely, you were offered another opportunity. While it didn’t pan out the way you thought it would, it did give you the opportunity to step up and do something empowering – which was leave an unhealthy work environment!

Look at your track record: I see a string of fearlessness and a continuous path of both personal growth and inner strength.

Remember: You’re the driver in this story. While unemployment compensation can most certainly help and take some pressure off of things, you can hope back in the driver’s seat at any moment. This is YOUR journey!

Sending peace & calm,
Victoria

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Lily January 17, 2014 at 11:22 am

Hi all-
I just wanted to say thank you for sharing your stories and to you Victoria, Bravo! For following your heart and opening your heart to life and for sharing with us. I to am about to enter a change, 6 years ago I left LA to move back to my childhood city to spend time with my parents. I’m happy I’ve been able to spend time with them as they both have dementia (dad more accelerated, mom beginning stages). My struggle has been living in a city where I don’t feel I fit, it’s been difficult to make friends and I’ve had no creative outlets (of my own doing) because I’ve been busy taking care of everyone and everything else. Last year I ended up in the hospital with a pacemaker and it has really awakened me. I have decided this is the year to get “back to me” and live the life I believe I’m meant to live…in California, with creativity and nature in a place that feels like home. Of course the guilt is what I am processing most along with a bit of fear of the unknown…is it the right decision etc….ultimately I feel I am being guided to this change and I must.
Thanks again for this forum and for sharing all!
God bless!

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Victoria Gigante January 17, 2014 at 1:50 pm

Lily,

Thank you for sharing a bit about your story. All I will say to you is this: If you feel that it is in your flow to go back to California at this time, GO. Follow that pull. Don’t resist it. Remember, you can always change course in the future. Part of the flow is understanding that there will be natural curves and changes of course. Surrender to them.

Moving to California may seem scary, but what’s the worst that can happen? You move back? Or move somewhere else? Or do something… entirely different?

Sending Peace + Calm + Surrender,
Victoria

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Kimberly February 22, 2014 at 1:33 am

A friend passed this a long to me as I am getting ready to end my marriage. I move out one week from today and I although I am clear about the why’s, I sure needed to remind myself today. I feel pretty affirmed about the others, and yet it is so good to be reminded that I indeed, “got this.”
Thank you!
~K

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Victoria Gigante February 22, 2014 at 9:44 am

Awesome Kimberly. Remember your why’s and TRUST. You’ve definitely got this. Let me know how the journey unfolds – embrace the ride.
Sending peace & calm,
Victoria

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Tee February 23, 2014 at 12:07 pm

Hi Victoria!

Im a 21 year old lady who has lost directions in life. I have already experienced existential crisis(God knows how many times) and im also under the care of an NLP. But i guess its not working like i thought it would.
I overthink a lot to begin with. Its a cliche i know. But the thing is i just cant stop thinking about the whole life processes. It exhausts me. And at times i feel too overburdened with everything that i feel like running away. Its not possible given my status quo.
I want to get a grip on my life and just live it. And about my friends and family, i am always complaining about them for the things that they should have done for me and then didnt. I am selfish enough to cover my folly. Ughhhhhh. How do i restart my life and just get rid of all these negativities?? Please help me.
P. S. I have mentioned only a meagre amount of my problems coz i myself have lost its count.

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Victoria Gigante February 24, 2014 at 5:11 pm

Tee,

It seems as though you’ve decided that your identity is all of these “problems.”

There is nothing wrong with you.

You’ve asked me: “How do i restart my life and just get rid of all these negativities?”

Will you consider coaching?

Try something different.

Sending Peace & Calm,
Victoria

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Reema February 24, 2014 at 11:10 am

Hi Victoria,

This was an inspiring post and I could relate to each word that you wrote! I am about to quit my 9-5 job in a large company and end my journey of working with big companies. I am planning to work with a startup and take my passion for writing more seriously. I will also be moving out of the city where I have lived for 6 years! I know I wouldn’t be earning as much as compared to my comfortable MNC job, but I want to take on this career experiment and see till how far I go. I am getting jitters, nightmares and several scary thoughts keep playing on my mind. The fear of uncertainty sort of creeps in all the time.

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Victoria Gigante February 24, 2014 at 2:01 pm

Reema,

Thank you for sharing your courageous journey! I felt empowered just reading about your new adventure. Let’s do a mindset shift here:

You say, “I am getting jitters, nightmares and several scary thoughts keep playing in my mind. The fear of uncertainty sort of creeps in all the time.”

How about this instead – You get tingly and excited when you think about the limitless possibilities that lay before you. You wonder what’s beyond the horizon, and embrace the unknown! Your mind is on fire thinking about all the amazing things that may happen!

Fear and EXCITEMENT are just two sides of the same coin. Do you feel ALIVE? It sounds like it!

Keep going. You’ve SO got this.

Sending peace & calm,
Victoria

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Daniel January 21, 2015 at 2:31 pm

Hi Victoria,

I just came across your text somewhere on the web, don’t remember exactly where! The most important thing to me is that things you are explaining talk directly to me as if it was modelled exactly for me.

I’m struggling with a divorce after 12 years relationship and 2 kids, aged 6 and 7 months respectively. As everybody most know, it is not easy to take a decision to live apart when you have a new born in the family but things were definitely not good and new born could not sort it out, unfortunately. I am not trying to find an excuse for leaving a woman and 2 young children alone, don’t get me wrong. But it has been an extremely tough decision for myself as well.

I do need to have a road-trip or a long journey to find the only person it has been forgotten in those 12 years, myself!

Anyway, thanks for this very inspiring and awesome text that will always be remembered by this crazy guy who writes to you right now.

Take care,
Daniel

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Victoria Gigante February 22, 2015 at 8:51 pm

Hi Daniel! Thank you for your comment. I hope this response finds you grounded, safe, and moving forward through this transition as smoothly as possible.

Peace & Calm,
Victoria

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Daniel Vianna February 23, 2015 at 8:42 am

It does Victoria, it does!
Thanks a lot for replying back.

One day it’s going to be my turn to write down my adventures!

Take care,
Daniel

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