As we make a transition to early adulthood, we may face a lot of changes, all too soon, and it can be a difficult phase for us to navigate through. As we begin to change physically, mentally and emotionally, we also encounter a lot of changes around us –our behavioural patterns, our priorities, the pressure of matching the expectations and the responses of people around us. The loved ones start to change, and we often get into the painful spiral of going through the changes and their effects on our emotional and mental health. Transition into early adulthood is more difficult than it sounds. A lot of emotional growing pain happens to us for the first time, and we need to address them in a healthy manner to get over and move on. Therapist Linda Meredith noted down the emotional growing pains that happen to us as we make the transition to adulthood.
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Loneliness: The priorities of everyone start to change and people we thought we were close to may start to grow apart. This can further make us feel lonely and lost. The sense of loneliness comes from knowing that we do not have people around us who can truly understand what we are feeling.
Shame: Be it job, or relationship or the stage of life we are in, we may not be where we thought we would be. This can make us feel unworthy and incapable of meeting our expectations. This can bring a sense of shame.
Guilt: In this stage, we learn to prioritise ourselves more and set boundaries that are healthy for us and others. But when we set boundaries with family and friends, we can also feel a sense of guilt for taking decisions to put us ahead of other people.
Sadness: As we learn to let go of toxic relationships, inauthentic spaces and unsafe people, we are also filled with the thick sadness of not having them in our lives anymore.
Anxiety: As we learn to take a stand and prioritise a life shaped by our personal values and beliefs rather than succumbing to societal expectations and stereotypes, we can also feel anxious about it.
Discouraged: As we start new and exciting opportunities, sometimes we may feel that we are not on the right track – this thought can make us feel discouraged about carrying on.