There have to be endings for there to be new beginnings. As an old year ends so obviously a New Year begins which we have a tendency to think of as full of promise of changes and new experiences. As Mitch Albom, wrote in The Five People You Meet in Heaven, “All endings are also beginnings. We just don’t know it at the time.”
It’s a great way to look at endings in our lives. If you are familiar with the work of William Bridges around Transitions (read more at Transitions) then this will be something that you will recognise. There are some endings, such as the death of a loved one, which leave us deeply saddened, however if we can accept the loss then we will in time start to dwell more on the good memories than the loss. Eventually, we will start to focus on what the new beginnings which the loss has created will have in store for us.
Each step in our life is necessary for us to continue growing. For example for many of us the end of school or college signifies the beginning of an adult lifestyle and possibly a career that you’ve studied for.
Every New Year is an opportunity for you to sit down and figure out what you want to do differently this year. Do you want to lose weight, quit smoking, move on to another job? As I wrote on LinkedIn the other day now is the time to rethink and reset your goals and make the necessary changes in your life – perhaps one at a time rather than in one almighty go.
An ending can only come when you let go of thinking about them. When negative things get to be beyond your control, you’ve got to distance yourself and begin to make a space for the positive. Otherwise, it will interfere with the future you want to have and keep you from making the changes you need to make.
We each need to recognise the reality of endings. We don’t have to like all of them, but we do need to accept the reality of what they are. If you don’t learn to accept endings you close your mind to allowing the new beginnings.
Think about things in a new way. You may think of yourself as “set in your ways,” about certain things, but you have the right to change your mind if something occurs (such as more knowledge) to tilt your thinking another way. Sometimes it helps to gain a fresh perspective on life and let go of old beliefs.
Remember, if you don’t take chances, then change isn’t possible. You can hold on to the good things in your life, but if a new idea triggers excitement and fulfillment in your life, try it. If you don’t, you may regret it.