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Transition Stages Part 2 of 3: Neutral Zone

December 6, 2012

 

The second phase of a life transition in Bridges' model is the in-between stage or the Neutral Zone.

 

In-Between/Neutral Zone

 

Letting go after an ending feels like being set adrift. If we don’t know what our new role is or how to be or where to be or what exactly we want next it’s easy to feel confused, frustrated, and scared.

 

Those who like to take action, to check boxes on a list, are tempted to fill time with busy-ness. Others might feel paralyzing despair. Yet others wade through the neutral zone with quiet creative exploration.

 

The in-between phase is an excellent time to occasionally detach from routines and the expectations of others so that we may hear our inner voices whisper, sing, laugh, and remind us of what is meaningful to us. In mid-life many adults find themselves reaching back to interests they had before their careers pushed them to specialize.

 

Young and older adults alike can benefit from taking a long look at their signature strengths. Personal motivators can show a path toward new beginnings when given the chance.

 

Exercise

 

Think about something that you once enjoyed but no longer participate in. What did you like about the activity? Does anything in your current life give you the same experience?

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