As your kids go off to college, join the military, or make other moves to start on their way in life, you’ll feel “the empty nest”. Things just don’t feel the right without your youngsters underfoot, and you can’t quite figure out what to do with yourself. But these feelings of loss don’t have to get you down if you take steps that can help you cope.
Rediscover Your Interests
Don’t dwell on the quietness of your home and the fact that your children no longer live there. Find something to do with yourself. You can immerse yourself in work, but unless you’ve put off significant career goals until now, use this free time to rediscover things you used to enjoy. Catch up on your reading, revive a long-lost hobby, take a fun class, or explore the world! You’re free to do what you want to do now, so go for it!
Lots of relationships go by the wayside as your time, energy, and resources get swallowed up by the needs of your kids. You may have used this as a convenient excuse to avoid dealing with your mate or others, and the distance becomes painfully obvious once the children are no longer at home. Come to grips with this. Discuss feelings of estrangement and work to restore the compatibility you once enjoyed. And don’t be afraid to seek professional help if you’re not getting anywhere on your own. You’ll benefit from the extra support and will learn how to revive many types of relationships that you used to value.
Plan for the Future
Since your life is changing, steer it in a new and exciting direction! Until today, most of your decisions have revolved around your youngsters. Now it’s time to think about how you might want to live and work differently. You may decide to retire and/or to relocate, for example. Consider the options available to you. This is the beginning of a new chapter in your life.
When your children head off to start their own lives, it’s normal to feel the empty nest. But remember that you have the power to fill your nest, so start doing so today!
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About the Author:
Dr. E. Carol Webster is a clinical psychologist consultant specializing in Success Psychology.
She is author of the book for those dealing with the stress of success ―
Success Management: How to Get to the Top and Keep Your Sanity Once You Get There,
The Fear of Success: Stop It From Stopping You! ―
the book to help you overcome fears that may be holding you back in your life and career
The Private Practice of Clinical Psychology in: Voices of Historical & Contemporary Black American Pioneers
E. Carol Webster, Ph.D.
Your Success Psychologist!
Clinical Psychology Consulting
Mailing Address: 7027 West Broward Boulevard, #262 Fort Lauderdale, FL 33317