Handling Major Life Changes

January 07,2021

Change is Good

In the 1960’s, researchers Thomas Holmes and Richard Rahe studied the potential link between stressful life events and illness. After examining the medical records of thousands of patients, Holmes and Rahe discovered that there was a strong correlation between the two, ultimately developing the Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale.

            Holmes and Rahe found that the death of a spouse, divorce and imprisonment were among the most stressful life events. But a person need not be widowed, recently divorced or newly imprisoned to be dealing stress sparked by a major life change. In fact, Homes and Rahe found that marriage and requirement, two things many people would consider positive changes, were among the 10 most stressful life events.

            Change can be both exciting and frightening. Men and women facing major life changes like moving, switching careers or retiring can take the following tips to heart to make such transitions go as smoothly as possible.

            Embrace the positive. Change has its advantages and disadvantages, but once men and women have decided to make changes, they should shift their focus toward the positive aspects of changing instead of worrying about the potential negatives. For example, if moving, focus on the adventure of living somewhere new and the opportunities to explore new places and make new friends.

            Accept your decision., Many people spend ample time mulling the pros and cons of major decisions before ultimately deciding to make major changes.

            Commit to your decision. Fully committing to change can increase your chances of making a successful transition.

            Maintain existing relationships. Professionals who are moving on to new companies and adults moving to new communities don’t have to give up their relationships with current coworkers, neighbors and friends. Maintain contact with valued friends, neighbors and coworkers through channels such as social media, email or even the telephone.

            Change is rarely easy, but men and women can take several steps to make transitions go smoothly.

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