Learning the Tricks of Transition: Four Basic Principles of Successful Transitions
Transition can be a very exciting time in your life. Those of us that yearn to be successful look forward to wonderful and new opportunities in which we can showcase our true gifts and talents. New jobs, new places, with new faces can create a much needed change of pace and scenery that can be beneficial to achieving your overall goals. More than the opportunity itself, it is very critical on how you handle the transition that’s most important. Transitions can be tricky. There are plenty of unknowns that come into play when dealing with a new experience. Adjusting to new surroundings can be difficult at times but with the right frame of mind success in your new transition is fully capable. In this week’s blog I will discuss the importance of continuing your momentum, remaining open and flexible, fulfilling your due diligence, and lastly, taking an observer’s approach to handle your transition process efficiently. Sometimes learning from others can be the best education. With that being said, I openly share some my experiences from my past, in the event that it may help you with your opportunities of transition in the future.
I’d like you to first think of a time when you were trying to secure that job you really wanted. You updated your resume, scoured Linked In for new contacts, and even attended numerous networking events – and after all of your hard work, you got the job! Then you gave your two weeks’ notice and took the job – but afterwards you fell back into that “same ole” routine of being satisfied with where you were. Establishing momentum to your desired destination is a key element to your transition. However, keeping that same momentum is just as critical. The same vigor and desire that you posed while trying to achieve one transition, should be the same enthusiasm and drive you implement while transitioning through each phase of your plan. Complacency and contentment can certainly become a recipe for unhappiness that will leave you feeling unsatisfied in life. Momentum is an element of success that is very hard to establish in the first place, but once it’s lost it’s even harder to regain.
Always remain flexible when transitioning into something new. Almost nothing ever works out in the exact manner that we plan for things to happen. I always leave room for the possibility of blunders in a transition. I welcome you to remember that during transitions, the variables aren’t your enemy, but a source of strength if you allow it to be. It is during these times you will need to improvise and think fast to accommodate the changes thrown at you. Believe me when I say the problem can frustrate you beyond belief. To find an alternate plan of action a rational state mind will definitely be required. Exercising patience and maintaining a calm demeanor will aid you in finding positive resolutions to whatever situations your transition will bring.
Before you think about transitioning make certain that you exercise due diligence. Now you may ask “What do you mean by due diligence?” You should map out and plan as much as you can on your own. Preparation is the name of the game and staying ahead of obstacles will assist you greatly in the long run. For instance, before quitting your current situation to pursue your dream career, check to make sure you have enough savings to hold you over until you secure your golden opportunity. Or if are seeking to enter a new field, do your research. Know what skills and education are needed. You get where I am going with this point. To drive home my point, let me share a true story with you. It was only a few years ago in which I was presented with a seemingly great opportunity from someone I knew and trusted well. At the time I worked in the field of education as a special education teacher. This new opportunity consisted of me relocating and continuing my teaching and football coaching career. I packed all of my things and made the move from Virginia to Atlanta without having all of the details of my transition outlined and confirmed. To my surprise, I arrived to find that the job I was promised was no longer available because I apparently didn’t meet the requirements that were needed for the position. You can only imagine how I was sick with severe frustration. As much as I wanted to blame someone else for leading me astray, I couldn’t blame anyone but myself. I failed to do my due diligence in my own transition. I didn’t ask the right questions from the right people. That particular situation had steep consequences and it ended up taking me quite some time to recover. It now serves as a valuable lesson for all my future endeavors. I hope my lesson can serve as a lesson for you too.
Lastly, when facing a new transition, take an observer’s approach to your new surroundings. Keeping your eyes and ears open when first experiencing something new will allow you to observe the true dimensions of your situation. One the most important elements of a new transition is acclimating to the new individuals you will meet. There will be personalities that will vary from one end of the spectrum to the other, but knowing how to deal with them will be essential to your success. Building a rapport with others helps to build favor among those that you will work closely with. People more than any other factor in a new transition will either be your number one nemesis or your saving grace. More importantly than the transition itself, your new adventure will give you the opportunity to let your light shine on others and be a true blessing in someone else’s life. Oftentimes we get caught up in trying to understand how our new ventures can better assist us in your own life, rather than trying to place ourselves in a position to help. New opportunities are great but you will get more out of your new transition by learning how to also serve others. I encourage you to go for the gold and shoot for the moon and the stars in accomplishing your lifelong goals. But always keep in mind of the overall picture in understanding the specific purpose for where God has placed you. You are exactly where God wants you to be for a very specific reason. When we can illustrate to God that we have handled our current blessing to the maximum potential, then God will see fit to grant you new opportunities.
Written by Coach Aaron DeBerry