[PODCAST EPISODE 27] Major Life Transitions Require This One Thing

Apr 15, 2021

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About the show:
Listen to this episode if you've ever gone through a major life transition or you will in the future. A few examples of major life transitions are getting married, having a baby, moving, getting a new job, switching to a new career, or retiring. If you've gone through one of these things or you will soon, there's one thing you must consider doing in order to move forward with ease, without making certain habits worse (like overeating), and without picking up any new habits that you don't want.


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Read the full episode transcript below:

Welcome to the Weight Loss Before and After Pregnancy Podcast. The place you’ll get simple strategies you can apply to your life today to start losing weight. Strategies that’ll help you reach your goal, move on with your life, and focus on the things that matter most to you. I’m your host, Certified Life and Weight Coach, Andrea Scalici. Let’s get started.

Hey everybody. Welcome to episode 27.

Today, we're going to talk about major life transitions and this one thing that they require that a lot of us don't talk about, don't hear about, don't think about, don't even realize.

But it's very important to take into account because if we don't do this one thing when we're going through a major life transition, it can go on for years and years and years without us realizing it, which could lead to us overeating or picking up some habits that we don't like. It could lead to a lot of negative behaviors that we don't like, that we don't realize might stem from this at the beginning.

So, when I say major life transitions, what I'm talking about is when you get married, when you have a baby or a second baby or a third baby, when you move, when you get a new job or start a new career, when you go into retirement, all of these things are examples of major life transitions.

And because this podcast is all about weight loss before and after pregnancy, I want to talk specifically about when we have a baby. When we have one baby or two babies or three babies, whatever it is, it's before and after we have kids. And we have to do this one thing before and after each kid we have. It doesn't just happen like a one and done type of thing. It's not something you do before and after one child, it's before and after every single child you have.

Like I said, we often don't even realize we need this. I've been going through this, my family and I have been going through this. For the past couple of months because we have a baby on the way, our baby is due in May 2021, so very soon. And we've been going through this the past couple of months, and I have not been aware of it until recently.

And it's part of the reason that I really wanted to talk to you about this today. It's very personal for me. It's something that I see a lot of clients go through. It's something that I see a lot of friends and family members go through. It's something I see everywhere, and it's something that we often don't even realize is happening and that we need.

And like I said, if we are going through a major life transition, like having a baby, and we don't realize this is happening and we don't do this one thing that I'm going to talk to you about today, it can lead to creating very bad habits for us in the future that include food or overeating or anything like that, and they might even include other bad habits that you form.

Who knows, right? It can definitely manifest itself in so many different ways. This is why it's really important for us to talk about.

Ok, so enough generalities, let's talk about specifics here. When you're going through a major life transition, getting married, having kids, moving, a new job career, retirement, any major life transition, you might start to feel sad or on edge or unsure or uncertain or unsettled. You might feel like the ground is shaking underneath you and you don't know what to do to stabilize that ground.

And if you're going through this, or you go through this in the future, or you have in your past, the one thing that you must do is process the loss and grief for your life and how it will or has changed.

Now, I'm going to say that one more time, because it's so important. The one thing you must do during any major life transition is to process your loss and grief for your life and how it will change or how it has changed.

Now, I want to be clear here, I'm not talking about clinical depression, postpartum depression, or anything that a medical professional has diagnosed. I'm not talking about that. What I'm talking about is just a general feeling of sadness or a general feeling of uncertainty or being unsettled or unsure, that sort of thing. I am not talking about a clinical diagnosis of any sort.

So, please know the difference between seeking professional help in terms of a counselor or a therapist or someone like that, and just the general processing of loss and grief that I'm talking about here. I just wanted to make that clear, just to make sure we were on the same page there.

So, I want to talk to you a little bit about the past couple of months here in my house. So, as you know, I've been pregnant. I am pregnant right now as I record this podcast. And I've noticed the past couple of months a shift in my house that wasn't really feeling great.

I've noticed some behavioral changes with my son, him having more anger than usual, lashing out, talking back, just a general change in his behavior that we haven't really understood. We just chalked it up to this is a four-year-old, this is how he's changing, but it didn't really seem like him either. So, we were confused about what was happening there. We knew, with a baby on the way, that it could have something to do with the baby, but we really didn't know what was happening.

And then, with my husband, I noticed just a general sense of maybe stress, anxiety, a little bit of frustration. And these are not normal things that my husband typically shows to the world or feels. He's a laid-back type of guy and doesn't really feel these type of things on a regular basis.

So, seeing him and noticing his anxiety and his frustration and his general overwhelm feeling has been interesting for me. And I'm like, "What's going on there?"

And then for me, the same thing. It's all been building up a little bit and feeling a little bit anxiety and uncertainty, and definitely feeling unsettled like, what are we going to do when we have two children? How is our day going to be? What's our schedule going to be like?

Just so many questions that we have that we don't have answers to yet, which is totally fine and normal. But just a little bit on edge here in my house, a little bit of that unsettled type feeling.

Now, normally I would like to say, I could spot these things and it's very easy to spot. Being a life coach, it's very easy to spot these things in my clients or in other people, but when it's you, and when you're going through it yourself, it's really hard to spot.

But the last couple of weeks I've started to really coach myself on this and get coaching from a coach on this, and it started to become apparent what was really happening in my house with all of us. And it all revolves around this major life transition of a new baby coming into our house and us not realizing that we have to process our loss and grief for the life we have right now. The life that we've built, the life that we've grown accustomed to and how it's going to change really soon, really fast, and in ways that we can't even imagine yet.

My husband and I went through the same thing when we got married. We went through the same thing when we had our first son and it's happening again now with our second son on the way.

And like I said, we didn't realize that until recently. But now that we know what's happening with all of us in the house, and we know this big shift is because we need to process how we're feeling. We need to process our loss and grief, and we need to understand that it's ok to feel the way we feel.

If this loss and grief that we feel goes unchecked or unprocessed, it could lead to more anxiety, more overwhelm, more frustration in our house, more arguing, more yelling. Just all of these things that could lead to me having a tough time losing my weight after the baby comes out, because I'll just be so emotional about everything that's changed and not realizing that I need to do this processing.

Basically, it could lead to a big disconnection in our family, versus the actual connection that we want to make. And because I'm a life coach and now that I know this is happening, I'm ready to take the reins on this and lead the way in my house. So, we've already started talking about processing our loss and grief and what that looks like, how our life might change, the things we can imagine, and this might look different for everybody, but this is how we've decided that it's going to look like in our house.

So, how to process loss and grief for your life, regarding how it will change in the future or how it has changed. Step one, if I'm doing steps here. Step one is to become aware. And that's what we haven't been doing the past couple of months, but we are now.

We are aware of what's happening, why everybody's on edge, what we need to do, and the unknowns have some answers and the unknowns don't have all the answers. So, step one, become aware of what's happening.

Step two is to just allow ourselves to feel the loss and grief, to look at the life that we have right now and what we've built and how we operate as a family on a day-to-day basis and feel the loss for that changing. We don't know exactly how it's going to change, but we know it's changing soon. So, we have to just be able to feel and process that loss.

Step three, talk to someone you trust about it, or coach yourself. For us, we're talking as a family about it together. I'm talking to my husband, we are talking to our son. We are talking together about how we're feeling and the uneasiness that is ahead for us. We're talking about it and it feels so good to talk about it out loud to these wonderful people in my family.

And step four, the final step here is really just to stay aware. As you're processing it, everyone will have a different timetable for that, how long it takes to do. Just stay aware of what you're feeling and allow yourself to move forward when you're ready.

You can move past the loss and grief in the future when you're ready, but you need to stay aware of what you're feeling and how you're doing and where you're going with your emotional life as things progress with the changes that are happening, the major life transitions that are happening in your life.

So, step one, become aware. Step two, feel the loss and grief. Step three, talk to someone you trust about it, or coach yourself, talk to your family and friends, talk about it, get it out there. And step four, stay aware and move forward when you're ready.

So, those were the four emotional steps that I would take in order to process loss and grief. But there's one other thing I want to talk to you about here and this is really more about the physical stuff that you can do, the actions you can take, the circumstances you might want to change that might help you with this processing.

So, one of the things that came up in my own personal self-coaching sessions was the sentence in my brain, this one thought where I said to myself, "I'm not doing well in all areas of my life right now."

And when I say, all areas of my life, I'm thinking about my physical health, because I'm about eight and a half months pregnant right now, almost nine months pregnant. I'm thinking about my emotional health. I'm thinking about taking care of my son and making sure he's getting all of the emotional support that he needs right now. I'm talking about my relationship with my husband and making that as best as it could be. Right now, it's not the best it could be. It's just not. I am focused more on my pregnancy than anything else. So, then I've got my business, then I've got my clients, I've got this podcast, I've got, cleaning up the house and keeping things organized. I've got managing the family finances. Just all these different areas of my life that I normally feel on top of.

Right now, it feels like I'm not doing well in all of these areas and that can really be frustrating. It really can. But if you think about it, once you realize, "Ok, I'm going through a major life transition. I'm feeling a little sad that my life is changing and I don't really understand how it's going to change. It's a little unsettling." Once you realize that thinking, “I'm not doing well in all areas of my life right now” is pretty normal.

I mean, it makes sense why we're feeling that way. So, I've really had to take a hard look at how I spend my time, what I do during the week, what I do during my day, and make some changes. I've had to delegate some things. I've had to just completely take certain things off my list for a while. I've had to make some crazy changes. Changes that I'm not really comfortable with, if I'm being honest with you, but changes that need to happen right now.

As an example, one thing right now is the house. I don't have the physical energy to clean the house. And I really don't want to spend my time doing that because, as pregnant as I am right now, if I were to clean the house, that would be all of my physical energy for one day. I would be done. So, is it worth it for me to clean my house in one day and have almost zero physical energy for the rest of the day? No, it's really not.

So, one of the things we're looking at is hiring a cleaning service to come in once a month or once every two weeks or whatever it is for a period of time to clean the house for us. And you know what? It feels really good. I like that decision and it might be a decision that I continue with even after I get my energy back. Who knows? We'll see.

One other example is this podcast. I normally do this podcast and then I write out the entire transcription of the podcast to have it on my website in case anybody wants to go there and read it, instead of listen to it. Creating that transcript actually takes quite a bit of time, you would be surprised. So, I've decided to hire a transcription service to do all of that for me. That'll save me a couple hours a week, and that makes sense for me. Actually, now that I'm thinking about it, I wish I had done it way earlier than this. That makes sense.

So, yeah, it's really important to work on your emotions, be accepting of where you are in life right now, allow yourself to feel whatever you're feeling, the loss, the grief, the sadness, the uncertainty, the unsettling-ness, whatever that word is, if that's a word, the unsettled-ness that you feel.

Allow yourself to do all of these things, but also take a look at your time, take a look at your schedule, how you're spending it, and is there anything that you can shift for a period of time during a major life transition? I'd be willing to bet that if you took a look at this, you would find some things just like I did.

So, I just want to wrap this up by saying, if you're going through a major life transition, whether it's before the transition or after the transition, you're getting married, you're having a baby, you're moving, you are changing jobs or changing careers, you're retiring, whatever is happening in your life right now, allow yourself to process the loss and grief for your life and how it will, or has changed.

Feel those feelings all the way through, allow them to be there and take a hard look at your life and see if there's anything you can move around and change for a period of time during your transition.

If you do these things, you will be able to move on so much faster and with more energy than you would, if you resist the feelings or if you don't make any changes and you force yourself to do everything that you were doing beforehand. Give yourself the compassion and the time and the space to really feel this through, make some changes, and just understand that it's a temporary thing, that your life is going to get back on track, whatever that is for you.

And that's what you want, you want to be aware and processing and moving forward when you're ready. Because if you don't, like I said, it could lead to you picking up some bad habits or could lead to long term anxiety and overwhelm and frustration about what's happening in your life. It could lead to doing things that you don't want to do, like overeat food, or look for other outlets to make yourself feel better like, watching too much TV or overworking or smoking or over looking at social media.

Whatever you do could be these behaviors that you don't want in your life, but that you're picking up to make yourself feel better, not realizing that you just went through a major life transition, or you're about to go through one. And all you need to do is this one thing, process your loss and grief.

All right, that's all I have for you today. In my house, we're just going to continue over here to process our loss and grief. We're going to look at the life we have now and understand that it's going to change soon. My family and I are going to continue talking about everything. We're going to stay aware. We're going to make some changes in our house, and we're just going to allow all of it to happen, welcome this new little baby into our life, and it's going to be awesome.

So, if you're going through any major life transition or you're about to, I really hope this podcast episode helped you in some way. Alright, thanks for listening everybody and I'll talk to you soon.

If you loved this podcast, I want to invite you to check out The 6 Stages Weight Loss Program. It’s my signature program that’ll teach you everything you need to know from start to finish to lose weight, reach your goal, and maintain it once you’re there. You’ll also learn how to have your own back through the process. Join me over at mcccoaching.com/join. I’ll see you there.


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