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‘A Bonding of Belonging’

April 1, 2023 | by Natalie Caine | No Comments

PALISADIAN-POST, in Pacific Palisades, Ca. March 30, 2023, interviews Natalie Caine, M.A., about her company, Life In Transition.

Palisadian Natalie Caine Offers Support to Groups Experiencing Life Changes

As people across the globe are faced with new life transitions every day, many decide to reach out for guidance and support from those who can provide it.

One individual who provides just that is Palisadian Natalie Caine, who has offered her services to thousands across the country.

Caine told the Palisadian-Post she first realized there was a need for support during her daughter’s high school opening meeting, when the school’s headmaster commented on the fact that the parents sitting there would one day become empty nesters themselves.

“I went home and Googled an empty nest, and there was no support anywhere,” Caine recalled. “So I asked some of the moms … and I facilitated a whole year of conversations and writing prompts about the new role we were going to have as parents, and who we want to be beyond being a parent.”

That following year, Caine was inspired by the new-found community of support she had created and decided to transition from being a speech therapist to holding presentations and workshops, which offered the tools to navigate these changes. She launched “Life In Transition.”

Caine said she helps “people travel their road of change” and provides tools for parents who are becoming empty nesters, career and marriage transitions, and those struggling with the new, modern role of grandparents. She offers presentations to different organizations, conferences, resorts and spas, in addition to online one-on-one sessions.

“The need is global,” Caine explained to the Post. “In the heart of what people are longing to get is support—whether they’re grieving or frightened or just stuck.”

In the 18 years that Caine has been offering her services, there have been people from across the world who have reached out to her—from India, London, Sweden and beyond. She has presented to lawyers, doctors and women’s groups, and written blogs and articles for newspapers, including The Wall Street Journal.

Caine said she currently presents and teaches programs at Omega Institute and The Pump Station & Nurtury in Santa Monica.

“No one wants to go through something alone,” Caine said. “Every single person has said, today and years ago, ‘Oh, my God, I don’t feel so alone. I didn’t know that other people felt this way.’ It’s a bonding of belonging.”

Caine shared she believes that through any transition, community and creativity are vital.

“Even if our world does shut down again,” Caine said, recalling her experience during COVID. “Even though it’s not being able to hold each other’s hand or pass the Kleenex or giggle or dance together, [people] can do it with Zoom. So it is that sense of community that’s just so powerful for compassion and creativity.”

She explained that anything “that gives you a creative moment and [keeps you] curious” with the situation of the transition you’re in is worth doing. Caine recommended doodling, painting, writing, playing a sport, cooking or gardening. These are activities that will inspire looking to the future, according to Caine.

In addition to finding community and creativity, Caine also stressed the importance of maintaining honest and open communication. She explained that being vulnerable—regardless of how challenging it may be—is the foundation to building connections.

“By having these conversations, you create a bonding circle of trust,” Caine said, “and from the foundation of trust, each person is able to be more of who they want to be.”

When faced with difficult conversations, Caine advised to roleplay the conversation beforehand, take a pause when needed and to always “listen more than you talk.”

“At first, it’s all about listening and compassion and simple tools to get through the fear and anxiety or the grieving,” Caine said. “And then it’s the fun of what’s the bigger picture of you having this change in your life: Is it to bring forward a part of you that’s gone dormant for a decade, and now wants to surface? Is it to bring some new vitality and new friendships and trust?”

However, the most important thing to remember, Caine said she believes, is to reach out for support.

“People really do want to help you,” she said. “Have [the] courage to pick up a phone or write an email to someone. You can’t get rid of that inner critic, but quiet it so that you can have more gentleness, for your mind, body and spirit. Be gentle to yourself today, no matter what happens.”

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Natalie Caine, M.A.