So What Do I do Now?

Nothing stays the same…. Ever. One of the two certainties in life. We get older, our goals and ambitions alter, we face divorces, bereavements and loss, retirement, our environments change, our careers move on or stop, and our children leave home. So what happens when the world tips on its axis, and everything we thought and knew changes. What do we do next?

We have to keep up, we cannot stand still or we get stuck and ultimately we get left behind. Survival of the fittest rules. But adapting to change is not easy. We can get a bit lost. Doing it alone is even harder.

For example, how do you evolve and adapt to retirement or a complete career change? You go from a very busy, structured day where people listened to what you were saying, to having to the freedom to choose what you do and when….

Will your life be as you anticipate when you make the decision to move on? And what might you be moving onto?

Do you feel excited about the opportunities and freedom, or feel lost and tempted to go back to doing the same kind of thing as soon as you can find an opportunity?

Given the current economic situation many people will think that worrying about this kind of thing is self-indulgent, particularly when they don’t feel they have a choice.

Most of us have a fear of change, especially if it is forced upon us. So what can we do to prevent our feelings pushing us towards the wrong decision?

Making this kind of choice is entirely personal and that means there is no right or wrong answer. If you are facing major changes in your life it’s worth thinking through the emotional impact it could have in addition to the financial or social implications – and then work out what you can do to help soften, prepare for or even avoid any negative impacts.

As well as talking it over with the people who are close to you and who may be impacted by the changes, it may help to talk things over with a professional such as a counsellor. They can help you think through options, look at things from different perspectives, add new insights and perhaps help you to consider some of the questions which may help you come to the decision that’s best for you.

None of us can predict the future. We don’t know what challenges and opportunities will come our way but with help and support from professionals we can ensure we make the best choices possible.

It can help to talk to a counsellor to figure out, explore and gain clarity about any major transition in your life. Or for further practical information about redundancy and leaving employment contact the Citizens Advice Bureau

Jacquie Hampton is a counsellor and psychotherapist. You can find out more about her at

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