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Exercises to manage new life transitions

You can learn so much about yourself with these simple exercises

by Psychologies

Plot your life transition history

Draw a horizontal line in the middle of a piece of paper to represent your life. Put the date of your birth at the start of the line and today’s date at the other end. Then mark along the line, at relevant ages, any life transitions that you experienced. These could include moving house, changing schools, a change in your family circumstances, going to university, and so on. For each life transition, make a note of the following:

  • How did you feel at the time?
  • What did you do to manage your feelings?
  • What was the impact of the change on you then?

Now, consider what messages you would like to give to your younger self. What can you learn from your history of dealing with life transitions and how does it help you with your current situation?

What are you grateful for?

It is easy to focus on negatives, particularly when you are experiencing a sense of loss and grief brought about by an unexpected change. To redress the balance, it is helpful to remind yourself of what you have and are grateful for by writing a list. If you make a regular habit of noticing what you are grateful for, you will shift your perspective and you are likely to:

  • Realise what is important to you
  • Appreciate what you have going for you
  • Appreciate other people more
  • Feel a greater sense of calm
  • Find it more difficult to focus on the negatives

What have you got going for you?

When you are feeling a bit battered by life and the unwanted changes imposed upon you, it’s important to make time to remember who you are, what is great about you and all of the things that you have got going for you. Acknowledging your strengths, successes and qualities is a recipe for building your confidence and self-esteem. Make a list of your:

  • Skills and talents
  • Experiences, travels and adventures
  • Roles you play/have played
  • Qualifications and training
  • Friends and family
  • Finances

Read the list regularly to remind yourself of what you have achieved and all of your amazing qualities.

Photograph: iStock

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