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3 Types of Life Transitions

Updated: Feb 4, 2021

Whether we are aware of it or not, life is constantly changing. Even when we have a sense of stagnation, things around us still do change. This is the beauty of life; it only takes time to learn to appreciate it.

Most of the small changes have little impact on how we feel about ourselves, like starting yoga classes, knowing new friends, or challenging yourself to learn a new language.

Other changes are more impactful. They turn our life upside down and change forever the person we are. These changes are more profound; they change how we perceive ourselves; these are called life transitions.

What are life transitions?

Life transitions can be initiated by you or imposed on you. A life transition involves an internal process and a profound shift within yourself. It impacts the way you feel, think and act in the world. It also has an impact on self-perception.

What’s the difference between a change and life transition?

Changes are mainly external events. Change itself does not impact the way you perceive yourself.

CHANGE may lead to a life transition, but TRANSITION always leads us to a CHANGE.

Different types of life transitions

You’re likely to experience more than one transition in your life. Here are three different life transitions. The first two are most likely already part of your life experience, while the third is a little more uncommon.

1. Developmental Transitions

Developmental transitions are the changes you experience as part of growing and ageing. These include; the transition from child to adolescent, adolescent to adulthood, adulthood to middle age, and middle age to mature age. Even if these transitions are a natural process, in some cases, they can be profoundly painful. A lot depends on the personal attitude toward changes, the capability to understand one's inner process, the awareness one possesses and circumstances of the change.

2. Transitions initiated by external events

External events may result in profound life transitions, as they have the power to lead to a change of values and beliefs. After such events, there are some difficulties to recognise oneself. They can be extremely painful and take through a grief process, as most of the time, one loses its identity. It will take time, self-care and patience to recover.