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TransitionWorks: A New Way to Think About Change

Transition Works

Changes in life, career, relationships...

Transition GuideWelcome to TransitionWorks, a site dedicated to helping you and those around you to better deal with changes, both large and small, that impact your life.

Whether you are personally experiencing a life change, or are a professional who works with clients, students, and families, our resources are designed with you in mind. TransitionWorks is an organization dedicated to helping you address, understand, cope with, and embrace changes that we all face as we move through everyday life. We all need to manage a host of events during our lives, including marriage, divorce, aging parents, our own aging, caregiving, career changes, retirement, and military transitions. Yet, knowing you’re planning to change your career, head overseas for a tour of duty in the armed forces, divorce or retire doesn't really explain much. Rather you need to look at the impact on your roles, routines, and relationships to understand how the transition is affecting your life and the lives of your family members. Then you can look at the coping resources you bring to the life change you are experiencing and determine if they are sufficient to help you get through.

TransitionWorks will introduce you to examples of life transitions, provide useful links to other sites, and explain life transition resources that we feature. You can "take charge" of change in your life and for those with whom you work by understanding the transition process, recognizing and using your coping strengths and skills and adding new ones to better help you manage change. So if you're facing a personal, family, military or workplace transition, we offer a method for systematically coping with change to help you arrive at the solution that is appropriate for you or for those in your organization.

We also provide a contact us button that we hope you will use if you have questions about life transitions or the products and services that we offer.

Surviving in Troubled Times
Nancy K. Schlossberg, Ed.D

Whether you are a millionaire (probably losing at least 30 to 40 percent of your assets), or a construction worker unable to find work, you are facing the same common challenge. You cannot fix the economic crisis but you can survive. The following tips for those at both ends of the financial spectrum can help your psychological survival.

Tip 1: Take "For Now Jobs" Today; Dream About Tomorrow's Career.
This is the time to think about short-term goals like eating and survival and long-term goals like positioning yourself for a productive future. Jan Alston, career advisor at the Women's Resource Center of Sarasota County, advises clients to take "For Now Jobs" in order to survive these bad times at the same time planning for a future dream job. This might be the time to return to school and get training for the future.

Tip 2: Maintain A Strong Psychological Portfolio.
McCain and Palin used Joe, the ersatz plumber, to illustrate what ordinary people need. I know Jim, an actual policeman, whose life after retirement provides clues to what leads to happiness. Deflated when he retired from his demanding but rewarding career, he told me, "I turned in my gun and badge and that was that." In other words, his Psychological Portfolio - his Identity, Relationships with colleagues, and Purpose - were diminished. To replace these, he moved into hotel management and once again regained his Identity and Purpose as he formed new Relationships.

Tip 3. Change Your Perspective From Money to Mattering.
The economic downturn provides the opportunity to rethink how much money you need to live and be happy. Assuming you are not at the poverty level, the biggest challenge is realizing that money isn't necessarily the answer to happiness. In fact, it is about everyone's need to feel appreciated, noticed, depended upon - that you count in others' lives. If you are fired and cannot reach the unemployment office to register for benefits, if you do not qualify for benefits because of some technicality, you will feel you do not matter to the larger community. If this happens to you, it is critical that you call attention through letters to the editor, calls to talk radio, blogs pointing out the many ways the larger community has undercut you and others. But when you are shown appreciation, respond to that too.