214: Managing All the Feels Through Life’s Big Transitions with Nicki Koziarz

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Managing emotions during times of life transitions can be difficult, but with the right tools we can use these moments as opportunities to deepen our faith. Join Alicia and her guest Nicki Koziarz as they talk about four different seasons of life transitions, the emotions and fears that come with them,  and how we can treat these seasons as opportunities to grow with God.

Nicki Koziarz is a best selling author and a speaker with Proverbs 31 Ministries. You can read her latest book, which she and Alicia discuss on today’s podcast, here.

Managing emotions during times of life transitions can be difficult. Join Alicia and her guest as they talk about the different seasons of transition and how we can treat them as opportunities to grow with God.


  • [03:30] Nicki’s revelation on commonalities of life transitions
  • [05:39] Nicki’s four stages of life transitions according to the life of Moses
  • [09:06] The similarities between the finishing and separation seasons
  • [11:17] Core emotions in the season of development
  • [13:35] Managing emotions like loneliness in seasons of separation
  • [15:32] The overlapping seasons of life transitions
  • [18:06] Trying to manage emotions by hurrying through seasons of transition
  • [20:28] How God comforts and challenges us during life transitions
  • [23:34] Nicki’s take on ‘holy now’ moments and how we can tune into them
  • [26:51] Nicki’s current season of transition
  • [29:59] Alicia’s personal reflections on life transitions
  • [38:17] Questions for you to reflect on + Alicia’s gift to you

[03:30] Nicki’s revelation on commonalities of life transitions

In Nicki’s book, Your New Now, she discusses life transitions. While doing her research for the book, she surveyed hundreds of women, asking about the emotions and transitions they were experiencing. After looking through the answers, she began to realize something interesting. She had expected the surveys to come back with hundreds of varying responses, but instead she was seeing similarities and patterns of the same emotions surfacing, despite the differences in situations. For example, a new retiree was experiencing the same emotions as a new mother, as well as a woman who had just been divorced and a woman who was starting a new job.

It seems that no matter what life transition they were experiencing, they found themselves in very similar seasons and patterns of managing emotions.

[05:39] Nicki’s four stages of life transitions according to the life of Moses

Nicki states that her book and the stages of life transitions that she discusses within it are based on the life of Moses. While we will find that our experiences look very different than what Moses was going through during his life, it all comes back to the same emotions and questions that we’re asking during those transitions. Based on Moses’ life, and the results of the survey she completed for her book, she found four major seasons of transition.

The first transition season is one of development. Development is a place where God is literally developing us into who He is calling us to be in the next season of our life, not necessarily where we find ourselves today.

Separation is the second season she discusses in her book. She believes this is the most difficult season for anyone to walk through, and references that Moses experienced a season of separation when he was separated from being a prince in a palace and placed as a shepherd in a field. It was a dramatic season for him in which he was separated from the life he had always known. As we walk through various separation seasons, like becoming parents of independent teenagers or experiencing a divorce, it’s always difficult and challenging. It’s always necessary for us to recognize where we’re at in these moments in order for God to teach us the lesson we’re there to learn.

Season three is cultivation, a season that Nicki describes as one you will either love or hate. The season of cultivation is all about learning new things and growing, working towards what you sense is coming next in your life.

In Moses’ story, we see a man who finishes well, which is the fourth season discussed in Nicki’s book. During this transition season, he passes the baton from himself to Joshua. It can also be a challenging season of harvest, as people recognize that they are meant to be finished and have to hand something off or move on to another season of their life.

[09:06] The similarities between the finishing and separation seasons

While discussing the four seasons of life transitions, Alicia mentioned that the finishing season and the separation season felt similar in that there seemed to be completion in both of them, and asked Nicki to elaborate.

Nicki feels that while they have slight similarities, they don’t necessarily both encompass completion. She gives the example of children being in transition of ages, where the parent is separating from having to wipe their bottoms and get everything for them. In this case, while there is a separation, there is still connection, so there’s separation to a certain extent, but not a complete end to the transition season.

[11:17] Core emotions in the season of development

One of the things that Alicia enjoyed about Nicki’s book is how she mentioned the emotions that are behind a lot of these different seasons. Those insights gave Alicia great life and encouragement, and she asked Nicki to share her thoughts on why the core emotion for the development stage is feeling lost.

When we don't know who we are or where we're going, we start to ask questions like, “Who am I?” or “Why do I feel so lost right now?” NIcki notes that development takes time. Whether it’s Moses’ story of wandering for 40 years, or Nicki’s story of wanting to write a book but being turned down multiple times, the truth is that it can take a lifetime to develop who God is calling us to be.

It can be easy to feel lost when you feel like you have an assignment from God, but the path to the next step of your journey looks really unclear. Nicki states that feeling lost is an emotion that can be found in multiple seasons of life transitions, but that it seems to be prevalent in the season of development because of the amount of change and unknowns.

[13:35] Managing emotions like loneliness in seasons of separation

Separation is another season where one of the core emotions shows up as loneliness. Nicki shares that this can be felt whenever God is physically separating you from something or someone that you’ve been connected to for a long period of time. For her, her season of separation came when her mom passed away. She would keep having thoughts of needing to call her mom, but no longer had that connection with her. This was also felt by many of us during the pandemic, when we were separated from our families, coworkers, classmates, and our typical, daily routines.

If you’re feeling loneliness in a season of transition, it’s important to connect to a community of other people.

[15:32] The overlapping seasons of life transitions

After discussing the seasons of development and separation, Alicia asked Nicki to discuss if there were seasons she found in her research that would tend to show up together.

Nicki shared that there are seasons that tend to show up together and that, in fact, she believes you can be in all four of the life transition seasons at the same time. Based on her research, she believes that we’re always in some type of transition in life, but that we may not recognize it because we tend to look only at big events as types of transitions. We're always in the process of moving from here to there, and we can see in scripture how God works in all of those seasons.

[18:06] Trying to manage emotions by hurrying through seasons of transition

Another aspect of life transitions is that we’re never sure how long we’re going to be in a particular season, so we tend to attempt to hurry things along. The trouble with this is that if you don’t take the time to fully understand where you are in your current season, you’re going to bring emotional baggage, like anger and confusion, into the next season of your life because you never really finished the last season you were in.

Alicia shares that if we aren’t honest with ourselves about what is going on in our current season, and don’t continue to share what we’re feeling with God everyday, she feels we continue to feel a brokenness and loneliness as we try to hurry things along. This adds to the baggage that we may take with us into the next season of our lives.

[20:28] How God comforts and challenges us during life transitions

The story of Moses gives us many great examples of how God can comfort and challenge us during life transitions. Moses is given the assignment to lead the Israelites out of Egypt, out of slavery, and we see him wrestle with God. In fact, he not only tells God that he's not going to do it and that he’s not qualified but he quits the assignment before he even starts it. We've all done this in one way or another, so it’s a relatable experience.

We come to a point in Moses’ story where we see God's anger come out when He's speaking to Moses, and eventually He introduces Aaron into this assignment. When Moses continues to give excuses, God challenges him to move forward but comforts him at the same time by sending him exactly who he needed to be beside him in that season.

In another season of Moses’ life, God tells him to throw down his rod, where it becomes a snake. God then says to grab the snake by the tail. When Moses follows through with His instruction, the snake returns to the form of a rod. Grabbing a snake by the tail is a dangerous action, so God is challenging Moses to trust Him. We also know that the staff is something that comforted Moses throughout multiple seasons, as he held it up at the Red Sea and carried it in many other places.

In this moment, God is asking Moses to look at what he has in his hand at that exact moment, just as he asks us to see what we have today, not tomorrow or the next day. It is such a powerful moment when we recognize that we can charge forward and not even know where we're going because we have evidence that God is with us for us.

[23:34] Nicki’s take on ‘holy now’ moments and how we can tune into them

In her book, Nicki talks about ‘holy now’ moments, like when she references Moses seeing the burning bush, and how we can learn how to tune our spirits into those how to see those more often.

We all have these moments that we tend to brush off as coincidence or intuition, when the reality is that God is trying to meet with us and show us something about our future. Those moments are an invitation to trust or to see a bigger vision.

Alicia shares that moments like these have helped her tremendously, but that she does struggle with making sure her heart and soul are quiet enough to be able to notice them.

Nicki encourages everyone to know that God is trying to meet with us. Even if you don’t feel like you’ve had a ‘holy now’ moment for a while, He wants to meet with you. These moments can be easy to miss when we’re rushing through life. One of the things that she does every single day is practice pausing in the morning, sometimes for a minute, sometimes for an hour. In that time, she asks God to make her aware of what He is doing in and around her so that she can lean into those moments and really listen to what He’s saying.

[26:51] Nicki’s current season of transition

Nicki is experiencing different seasons of transition within her personal and professional life, sharing that she is in a season of separation with her boys, as they thought the adoption process would be finalized and they would be with them by Christmas but they still aren’t with them. She also feels that she’s in a season of development with her girls as they have transitioned from children to young adults. She’s had to relearn and educate herself for them and for her boys. She also feels that God is developing her character as she manages large emotions every single day during these seasons.

[29:59] Alicia’s personal reflections on life transitions

Are you walking through something that feels really obvious in terms of a transition, or is it more subtle? Alicia feels this is an important distinction to make, identifying what is obvious and what is subtle so that we can more easily recognize the seasons that we’re in. 

Alicia shares that, like Nicki, she also feels that she is currently experiencing multiple seasons of transition. As a mom of a 20, 18, and 15 year old, she’s experiencing a shift in how she is needed that feels like a separation. They don’t need her in the ways that they used to depend on her, but they are coming to her in ways that she is still learning how to manage. She describes this as a “push-pull” parenting stage that isn’t always clear.

In this season of separation, she also feels that God is developing her so that she can relate to her kids in new ways and to be able to lean on Him in different ways as well. She describes feeling disoriented in this season.

As a writer, podcaster, and coach, Alicia feels that she is in a constant season of development and cultivation. She’s always figuring out what God is calling her to do, trying to reach out to women in a different way, or being challenged by different clients’ needs. It's challenging to live in a world that is constantly advancing technology, needing to always be learning the new ways she could utilize platforms and other things that would be helpful for her clients. She describes it as a challenging but exciting stage that has really forced her to see the good hand of God in all of it. 

If you’d like to learn more about the four seasons that Nicki mentioned in her interview, you can read more about development, separation, cultivation, and finished seasons by going to Nicki’s website, www.nickikoziarz.com

[38:17] Questions for you to reflect on + Alicia’s gift to you

  • Where are you in the whole scheme of life transitions? 
  • What are some things that you feel specifically God is walking you into or through? 
  • What do you feel like you’re being called to finish?
  • What is God calling you to discover in this transition?
  • How might you be fighting God as you walk through this transition season? 
  • What are some of the ways you feel your spirit may be pushing back?

Alicia is incredibly thankful for those of you who listen to the podcast, and is especially grateful for those who have taken the time to leave a podcast review and rating. When a podcast has more ratings and reviews, and they come in regularly, it tells the algorithm that it’s a podcast more people should hear. Her heart is to get these messages about God, hope, and how to practically manage our emotions and our thoughts in front of more people. 

If you could take two seconds to leave a rating and review, Alicia would like to share a gift with you as her way of saying thank you. It is ‘50 I Am Statements’ that reflect who you are as a child of God, presented in an audio declaration. If you aren’t an Apple user and can’t leave an Apple review, send us a screenshot of you sharing the podcast on social media.


Break Free from Feeling Never Enough

Nicki Koziarz | Website

Your New Now: Nicki Koziarz


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