If we’re lucky, we get to a place in our lives when positive change is on the horizon—the benefits are fully vested, the kids leave home and that trip we thought we’d never have time to take is booked. Yet, at this time of exciting possibility, why do many of us feel unsure? We are trained from early on to fear and avoid uncertainty—that’s why.  Even in the best of circumstances, human beings need to adjust.

“If life were predictable it would cease to be life, and be without flavor.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

 

Peering into the unknown. To be successful in any transition, we need to recognize the foundational issues we face when leaving the familiar behind. For many of us, leaving full-time employment or raising our children involves not only a change to our daily schedules, but a change to our very identities and social structures.

According to a survey commissioned by Ameriprise Financial, after we leave work, more than a third of us miss our day-to-day social connections with colleagues the most.

“Nothing diminishes anxiety faster than action.” – Walter Anderson

 

The world is your oyster.  The good news is you can do pretty much anything you want. The bad news (if you’re like many people), you might find so many cool things to do, it’s hard to figure out where to start. Should I try teaching or help entrepreneurs? And if I want to teach, should I do it in a classroom, or first mentor or tutor students 1:1?

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in you sail. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain

 

The key is jumping in and not overthinking it. As we shared in a recent post (Step 2 of 5.6 Steps to Fulfillment), the earlier you start the better.  Start exploring. Read a few of our Spotlights to get going. See what other people are doing. Try things to see what fits your new life best. You’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain.

 

How to make a big decision.  Many theories and strategies. A recent NYT believes there is some science to the process.

 

More to Explore. Want to explore things to do? Please peruse out our ever-expanding Discover Your Next  section.