What was closure if not a clock?
Not an end as everyone imagined, but a beginning.
I so love this quote!! Why are ending so hard to face head on? Have you noticed you sometime (always?) try to avoid them in your own life? I notice this on occasion during last sessions with clients that aren’t actually named closing sessions (or at the very least, “closing sessions for now,” since the need for therapy ebbs and flows) because of discomfort or a myriad of other feelings that arise during endings. I also noticed this recently in my own life, when my daughter decided to walk graduation. Even though this was completely her decision (and not one easily made since she graduated early and our family has since moved), I was surprised by how happy and excited I was about this life event. And then I got it… oh, that’s right, I need closure in this chapter of her life too.
Let’s start with why closure is so important. It gives you:
- A chance to pause and validate how far you’ve come
- A new, upcoming life chapter to celebrate
- Time to process all that has happened in this chapter- the good, the bad and the ugly
- Space to grieve any losses from this part of your life
- A chance to fully embrace all your accomplishments up to this point
- Time to acknowledge all the hard things you’ve gone through and overcome in your life
- Space to say goodbye to important people, places, things, events, etc.
- Room to feel all your different feelings and emotions, even ones like relief that you’ll never have to experience some of these things ever again in life- No more SATs/ACTs- Thank Goodness!
What else would you add here about closure and endings?
Why endings can also be bittersweet, really hard, and evoke a myriad of different feelings and emotions:
- You may feel some anxiety and fear around what’s to come in the next chapter of your life
- You may feel lonely without your built-in support group
- You may feel sad about leaving all that is familiar in your life
- You may feel excited about this next step in your life
- You may already be grieving the loss of your “old life”
- You might feel happy and are able to fully embrace the upcoming changes in your life
- You may feel angry that your life isn’t unfolding the way you wanted or expected it to unfold
- You might feel calm and content as you move towards adulting and fully relying on yourself
- You might feel hopeful that things will get better as you grow and mature
What else would you add here that’s bittersweet about endings?
Here are some self-care ideas to help you during times of changes:
- Process how you’re feeling in therapy
- Write about it in a journal
- Allow yourself time and space to feel your feelings
- Go for a walk outside and be mindful of your surroundings (leave the music, podcast, audio book, etc. at home)
- Do a quiet meditation/listen to a guided meditation
- Read a great book
- Snuggle with your pet
- Do something creative
- Talk to a friend or family member who truly cares about you
What else would you add to this self-care list?
If you’re currently going through a season of change where there’s an ending and a new beginning, know that closure is really hard for most of us. I’m thinking of you and sending lots of love and support your way!