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  • Sayanti Bhattacharya MD

Coping with life transitions

Updated: Nov 13, 2023

We go through several transitions in life, some major ones and many smaller ones. Changing schools, starting college, moving to a new place, starting a new job, or a new relationship; are all major transitions. Transitions are challenging times, and can feel unsettling and overwhelming. Here are some ways to cope:

Be prepared: While some transitions are unexpected, many are planned events. Prepare for the change as much as you can.

Be flexible: Sometimes your best laid plans may not work out, be open and willing to adapt.

Be kind to yourself: Expect the transition to be challenging. You may not feel like yourself for a while, you may feel anxious or low at times. Reset and lower your expectations from yourself.

Take care of yourself: Self-care is important at all times, but more so during these difficult times. Make the time to unwind and rest, to eat well and get good sleep.

Give yourself credit: Celebrate small accomplishments. Remind yourself of past successes. If that is hard to do, think about the times when others have appreciated you.

Prioritize: Big changes can be overwhelming. Attend to the most important things first. Do only a few things in a day. Non urgent tasks can wait.

Avoid generalizing: Difficult times do not last forever, though it may feel like it. You have had better times in the past and will have smoother days in the future.

Accept what you cannot control: You may not have control over the situation or event, but you can choose how you react to it. Allow yourself to accept the things you cannot change, and focus on what you can actively work on.

The stress of transitions can trigger episodes of depression and anxiety, or worsen existing challenges with these. Prioritize getting professional help.

Live mindfully and well.

Dr. Sayanti Bhattacharya MD, MS

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