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Making a Difference in Lives


In September 2013, I wrote to my friend. I was completing an assignment: writing to someone I Love and care for to hone my blog writing.

Re-visiting that email, I see it as the way I wish to engage with every aspect of my life.

(And) that is just as true when I share with patients, with friends; with family.

Extracts from the email are as follows:

I thought I’d write and share some of my thoughts, rather than call.

Writing makes such a difference, it’s presence makes what’s said so much more ‘solid’. I guess it’s the bringing the virtual into the solid?

I am very touched by the extent you include me in your life; I am touched by the honesty you share with and the integrity you have when you tell me your secrets and traumas.

How you include me in your little world; what you encounter and what you go through with courage and fortitude. I hope I help as you allow me to provide an ear.

What really moves me is your honesty and your inclusion. I feel able to bring meaning; so much in life has little value beyond connecting.

Our connection means a great deal to me.

Thank you.

Honestly engaging with people is the very magic that makes Life the beauty it can be. We can all engage. Sadly, we don’t (always) and miss out on what we want: intimacy (with self and others), relationships with integrity, the security of spiritual values; balance and the confidence to face Life and the world we live inside ourselves.

Real communication follows deep, attentive Listening to our selves, to other people and being sincere in all that we do.

How we feel follows how we think and that follows the beliefs we hold.

If I choose to engage with my self, and Be at ease, my space is clearer to build Being with others.

That is honest. And holds beauty whilst making a difference in lives.

Spirituality and the Reasons for Transitions Mentoring

benn river

When unclear in myself or emotionally distressed, I find I lack the awareness I need to make effective decisions. Stopping and contemplating – being still, just being at ease – provides me the space I need to feel capable to choose what I need to do.

Transitions Mentoring came out of contemplating how life works and finding ways to make a difference. One key is to engage spiritually where spirit is about the essence of the being in human being; it is about connecting where we share and explore the purpose of our lives. And, deal with the consequences of changes that affect our experience(s).

When putting aside dogmatic (religious, societal, political or personal) views and “have to-s”, “should do-s”, “musts” and “oughts”, we have the chance to meet each other and deal with what we face in the world.

Each day, we are vulnerable to the effects of change; some days are easier to deal with than others. Personally, I’ve experienced all sorts of problems in my life and understand the power of mentors for many have shared their wisdom and been there for me.

Learning to accept contemplation, learning to be, Love, care and support have all helped me to manage, and even thrive, in adversity. I know what despair, grief, shock and depression feel like. I’m still breathing, I’m still here. Something must be working.

To thrive, we need to share, to be heard, to build bridges of spiritual understanding that care for and support each other regardless of ethnicity, religion, gender, age, creed or political persuasion. Caring for ourselves and each other in this way makes for a life that’s simpler than we ever imagined.

Contemplation and creating a contemplative space of stillness and allowing ease to be, is powerful. It’s about making a decision to empower your self. This is the beginning of Transitions Mentoring which explores further by listening to the story of who and how you are today, seeking clarity through utilising simple tools that empower you in the world you live in.

The Why? What? and How? of Transitions Mentoring

Transitions happen all the time and all through our lives: what we once knew is no longer what we relied on being the same (for ever or at least for some time to come)… And to be honest, this change, this drama, this shift in our world(s) can be traumatic, scary and extremely destructive to our balance and how we live thereafter.

Transitions are – for me – times when we are quite simply challenged by changes often beyond any control we may have to influence the circumstances. They can cause heart-breaks, grief, bereavement, distress on almost any level, shock, symptoms in the mind, the body and or the spirit.

(An incomplete list of problematic or negative) Transitions includes, in no particular order:

Death and Loss

  • death of a loved one – family member (parent, child, other relative), friend, partner
  • death of a dream, an idea, a hope, a delusion, a trusted situation
  • loss of a relationship, a job, a contract, a home, a sense of purpose, a valued possession, of money, of security
  • loss of youth, of sense of self or purpose
  • loss of the ability to face the world and deal with life and confidence
  • loss of capacity, of resilience, of ability to manage (for whatever reason)

Health and Well Being

  • a challenge to your health, your well-being that’s serious enough to change how you live your life
  • an unexpected diagnosis of serious illness of self, family member or friend
  • a serious or catastrophic injury to self, family member or friend
  • assault, accident or surgery – severe or otherwise

Other Significant Transitions

  • getting married, getting divorced, having children for the first, second, third time et al.
  • getting into, being in or getting out of a relationship
  • discovering deceit, breach of trust – being the victim of fraud, theft, destruction to your life by another
  • dissolving of a partnership – at home, at work, in love
  • becoming addicted to drugs (any type), alcohol, behaviourisms (gambling, co-dependence, religious thought, politics, self-destruction etc. etc.)
  • falling into depression, despair, fear or distress
  • imprisonment – before, during or after – the effects and influences of the experience
  • being accused or incorrectly punished for something you are innocent of
  • bullying and intimidation – both as perpetrator or victim
  • victim to / of any crime – violent or otherwise
  • deciding how to be, where to be, where to go in one’s life; what next and all its implications
  • exams, challenges and things that press buttons and push towards our limits of endurance …

Why an incomplete list? Because who can ever say what causes a Transition in someone’s life?

Important note: Oddly, positive or beneficial Transitions can prove stressful, too – many of the above when they can be seen as definite “gains” in life – new job, new relationship, success in gaining contracts, sudden influx of wealth … and overcoming a major hurdle or obstacle, can prove traumatic and distressing (because the known has changed).

The Bottom Line

Life is full of changes and challenges and some of these can prove just too much or push us too far, on top of all the other “stuff” life throws at us, and thus pushes that “too much pressure” button. And that’s when life gets difficult… And that’s Why? Transitions Mentoring.

What? Transitions Mentoring is

A simple set of communication and engagement tools that include:

  • deep listening
  • engagement
  • incisive questions
  • care
  • support
  • understanding
  • empathy
  • intuition
  • consideration
  • acknowledgement
  • acceptance
  • kindness
  • among other things, skills and qualities…

How? Transitions Mentoring works

Using the above tools it is possible to experience life differently.

We, each and all, have thoughts, feelings, beliefs, experiences, understandings and behaviours that determine our lives. Sometimes, these do not help us in the way we experience and or live our lives. Transitions Mentoring – through understanding and dealing with the (unhelpful or painful) patterns – is one way to shift one’s life onto a more comfortable or even keel.

Everyone has the potential and capacity to change their thinking, change their experience and change their lives. That doesn’t mean we all will. The possibility and capability is there. Transition Mentoring is a choice you can make to experience life in a more positive, well being rich way.

About Benn Abdy-Collins

Click on: About Benn