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  • Writer's pictureJasmine Wilson, LCSW

Life Transition Examples That Young Adults Experience

Updated: Feb 27

If you're in your 20s or 30s, you're probably riding a rollercoaster of transitions called young adulthood – a stage of life marked by a whirlwind of new responsibilities, new-found independence, and self-exploration. In this blog we’ll explore examples of life transitions that young adults commonly experience and dive into the whirlwind of changes and challenges you might be experiencing. Let’s explore, learn, and embrace the ride together!

A group of college students navigate the transition from highschool to college in just one example of life transitions young adults face. Learn more in Life Transitions Counseling in La Mirada, CA.

The Transition to College

Leaving the familiar nest of home can feel like walking into the abyss. From managing your finances to deciding what to eat for dinner every night (cue the cereal-for-dinner phase), the independence that comes with college is both thrilling and, at times, a bit overwhelming. Suddenly, you're making decisions about everything from what laundry detergent to buy to how late is too late to start a paper.

You Are Not Alone In Navigating These Life Transitions

The secret is that everyone around you is learning to navigate this uncharted territory, too. The girl next door might be wondering how to do laundry for the first time, and the guy down the hall is figuring out how to cook something other than instant noodles. Embrace the challenge, make mistakes, and celebrate your wins, big and small. And yes, it's totally okay to ask for adulting advice—you're still learning, after all!

In the grand scheme of things, this life transition is about finding your own rhythm, creating a support network, and celebrating the newfound independence that comes with being a college student. It's the beginning of a thrilling, sometimes nerve-wracking journey into independence.

A group of young adults work together at their job. The transition to the workforce is just one of many examples of life transitions that young adults must overcome. Therapy for Life Transitions in La Mirada, CA can help you develop a plan of action!

Career Beginnings

Ah, the transition from student life to the professional world—the inevitable leap into the job market. Crafting that perfect resume, acing interviews, and deciphering workplace culture can feel like solving a puzzle. Additionally, in today’s economy, it can take young adults longer to define their career path and establish financial security.

Finding Your Career Path Is a Marathon, Not a Sprint

As your career journey begins, know that pivoting and going back to the drawing board is okay – uncertainty, job changes, or even a complete shift in career path are completely normal. Remember, you're not just finding a job; you're discovering the path that aligns with your passions and strengths. Think of this life transition as a marathon, not a sprint – pace yourself, enjoy the ride, and make the most of every opportunity.

Relationship Changes

As we start to explore and understand our identity and values, it can change who we connect with and how we relate to others. Changing friendships, new friendships, family dynamics, and romantic relationships are all significant aspects of this transition.

As people explore new interests, career paths, and personal growth, friendships formed in childhood or adolescence may drift, and new connections with people who share your current values, aspirations, and interests will begin to blossom. Simultaneously, you may find yourself seeking companionship, experiencing your first committed relationship, or even heartbreak. And all the mushy-gushy love stuff can be uncomfortable and scary if you’ve never experienced it before.

Maintaining Relationships is a Tough Job

As if all these changes weren’t enough, maintaining your relationships (romantic and platonic) can feel like a job in and of itself! Learning when and how to lean on others, setting healthy boundaries, and communicating your needs will help you find balance in staying connected and allowing space for individual growth. Remember, relationships are not static; they change and evolve, just like you.

A group of young adults form new relationships through shared interests, The transition to adulthood can be challenging for young adults, but Life Transitions Counseling in La Mirada, CA is a great resource for help.

Financial Independence

Welcome to the world of budgets, bills, and managing your own money! You’ve just unlocked another achievement in adulting and whether you’ve just gotten your first job and paycheck or you’re finally at a point in your career where you’re making enough money to pay your bills, save, and maybe even invest a little, the transition to financial independence can come with a steep learning curve.

Learning how to make smart money decisions might mean creating your first budget, paying bills and/or housing-related expenses, shopping for groceries, and figuring out how to stretch your income to cover all your needs (and maybe a few wants).

Things May Not Always Be Perfect, You Are Doing Your Best

Ultimately, this life transition is all about understanding the value of money, planning for the future, and learning to make responsible financial decisions. Know that it may not always be perfect and that there will be unexpected expenses and emergencies – the best you can do is start planning ahead and budget, budget, budget!

A young adult woman explores her identity by trying new foods and experiences, just one example of life trasiitions young adults can face. Get the support you need to be successful in Therapy for Life Transitions in La Mirada, CA..


Amidst the chaos of life transitions, there's a quieter, yet immensely significant journey happening within you— personal growth. It's like planting seeds of self-discovery and watching them bloom into the vibrant garden that is you.

You might be questioning the values and beliefs that you were taught growing up and starting to form your own views – all of which can be very confusing! As we journey through young adulthood, our identities are in a constant state of evolution. What we thought defined us yesterday might not hold true tomorrow.

Take a moment to reflect on your passions, dreams, and what’s important to you. Set goals that excite you, and don't be afraid to pivot if needed. Your journey is uniquely yours, and every step forward is a celebration of the incredible person you're becoming.

You Don't Need to Have All the Answers Now

Whether you’re starting college, finding your first real job, getting your finances together, or trying to better understand yourself, it’s okay to feel a little lost. Because so many changes are happening simultaneously, you may also feel a mix of overwhelm and a sense of being “in-between.” It helps to think of young adulthood as a blank canvas, an opportunity to explore who you are and what you want in life. As this period of your life unfolds, try your best to embrace the uncertainty, learn from each experience, and trust that you don’t need to have all the answers now.

A group of friends smile at the camera representing the changing relationships young adults face which is one example of life trasiitions young adults can face. Get the support you need to be successful in Therapy for Life Transitions in La Mirada, CA

How Therapy for Life Transitions Can Help Navigate These Challenges

Navigating these life transitions can often feel like navigating a complex maze without a map. This is where therapy, specially tailored for life transitions, becomes a vital tool for young adults. Therapy provides a safe and supportive space for individuals to discuss and explore the whirlwind of changes they are experiencing. Whether it’s grappling with the newfound independence of college life, the anxieties of entering the workforce, evolving relationships, financial responsibilities, or the profound journey of self-exploration, a therapist can offer guidance, support, and strategies to manage these challenges.

Life Transitions Therapists Can Offer Support and Guidance

Therapists specializing in life transitions understand the unique pressures and dilemmas faced by young adults. They can help in developing coping mechanisms for stress, anxiety, and uncertainty. Therapy sessions can be a place to learn skills like effective communication for maintaining healthy relationships, strategies for cultivating work-life balance, and techniques for self-care and personal growth.

Most importantly, therapy offers a non-judgmental environment where young adults can freely express their fears, aspirations, and uncertainties. This guidance and support can empower them to make informed decisions, foster resilience, and navigate these formative years with greater confidence and clarity, helping lay a solid foundation for a well-adjusted and fulfilling adult life.

Begin Life Transitions Therapy at Adaptive Resolutions Counseling Services in Brea, CA Today!

Are you a young adult navigating the complexities of life transitions? If you're feeling ready to delve deeper into your journey or could use a supportive ear, consider scheduling a one-on-one session at Adaptive Resolutions Counseling Services. Life Transitions Therapy in Brea, CA is available both online in California and Arizona and in-person. It is designed to guide and empower you through these significant changes. Please know that help is available.

Other Therapy Services Offered at Adaptive Resolutions Counseling Services in Brea, La Mirada, and Online Throughout CA + AZ

In addition to Therapy for Life Transitions in Brea, CA, Adaptive Resolutions Counseling offers other services to meet you where you are in your life. This includes Therapy for Anxiety and Therapy for Self-Esteem. I also offer Individual Therapy and Group Therapy Options. Reach out today to learn more about my background, training, and approach to therapy here

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