7 Easy Ways to Master Your Empty Nest
Yes, it's true, you can unlock secrets of a better life as you learn to master your empty nest syndrome! I've been there. And, I know how challenging it can be for everyone to get through as they face confusing emotions like sadness and joy all at the same time. If this sounds like you - YOU ARE NOT ALONE!
Here are some ways to help yourself ...
-Honor Your Feelings.
Allow yourself to feel whatever you are feeling even though you may not be able to name it. You may feel anger, sadness, abandonment or fear compounded with joy and pride all at the same time. How confusing? Well, just know that this is normal and more importantly, ITS OK TO FEEL ALL OF YOUR EMOTIONS AT THE SAME TIME – you are not losing your mind! Just honor your feelings by letting yourself move through the waves of emotion. It will get easier AS YOU MASTER YOUR EMPTY NEST.
So many people struggle as their role transitions from caregiver to supporter. THERE IS NO RIGHT OR WRONG WAY TO GO THROUGH IT, every parent is allowed to have their own experience. Don’t create or hold yourself up to a set of rules of what you should and should not be feeling - it's all OK! Instead, focus on accepting what you are going through and try to let go of self-judgement.
-Know That You Are Not Alone.
This is important. There are so many times when young adults leave home that their parents are left feeling isolated and even abandoned. These feelings can be part of the normal process of moving forward so make sure you REACH OUT TO OTHERS WHO HAVE BEEN THERE, join support groups in person or online - you don't have to go through it alone.
-Learn From Others.
Surround yourself with people who understand, exchange resources and learn how other parents have managed through their transition. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel and do it all alone - just witness what they did/do, how they did it and allow yourself to incorporate some of their techniques. Also notice how they began to take MORE TIME FOR THEMSELVES after their kids left home.
-Embrace A Healthy New Relationship.
By honoring your own experience of your empty nest, you will be more willing to EMBRACE A NEW CHAPTER OF LIFE for both you and your young adult. Let’s face it - you don’t want to ever hold your children back from living their lives to the fullest so be a part of they journey!
-Cherish Time Together.
At first, it may be difficult when your young adult comes home to visit - then leaves again. It’s OK to go through this too, you will be OK! LET YOURSELF CRY IF YOU WANT TO - but, don’t beat yourself up - its OK to express your emotions.
When they are home make sure you treasure every moment you have with them. Feel free to tell them that you miss them and how proud you are of them.