Transitions - changing direction

Sounds too hard, dramatic, and energy draining? Well, it need not be so difficult to face and to do. It can be gentle, it can be slow and steady, or it can be accidental and ‘just happens’. That is what transitioning means – steady, manageable, paced and yet proactive.


Changing direction can apply to work – promotions, new job or company, job re-evaluations or restructuring; imposed or chosen.

To transition is to know there are changes to be made inside and outside yourself.

It means there will be some ‘discomfort’ that always comes with change, even if it’s a positive, good and wanted change. We are, as people, made to change and develop, grow and learn. Do you know that it’s something we are actually driven to strive for?

You can change direction when things stagnate, you feel trapped or stuck, and you know something needs to change – but what? And when and how?

No rush! It might feel like there is a rush but if you monitor your lifestyle and needs, become self-aware and keep managing that as your things change, then so do your needs change, your skills, your focus and your next step!

Then we can utilise all that knowledge and learning, that awareness and understanding, to create the environment where we can thrive rather than just survive.

Step by manageable step and you can get there.

Changing careers might be possible by doing two jobs part-time so you can learn the new skills and behaviours you need in the ‘new’ job vs the old, merging the skills and tendencies you already have with the new ones you are developing, willingly or not at least initially!

Moving house or location, country, county, or lifestyle changes that we more often choose but are sometimes enforced on us. We do adapt through the discomfort and uncertainty (and this is the main problem, people don’t like the unknown, they like to be in control of their environment and options). You cannot ever be certain a move will be ‘good’ or as good as you hope and intend. Unforeseen issues can arise – noisy, difficult neighbours after friends you once had for neighbours, practical repairs not noted, but also the new places you find nearby or a quicker route to work, after all!

Status changes like marriage or divorce, parenting vs couple or singledom. These are all natural transitions and changes that we manage. We don’t always manage them as easily as we expect to – but that’s where resilience comes up and where we learn that change isn't easy or comfortable. But in general, it is necessary! It definitely helps you to grow.

Value changes like roles and responsibilities, demotions or promotions, redundancies or missed chances. Knocks to your self-esteem and confidence like separation, empty nest or bereavement, where you fit in the world, in your community or company suddenly.

Our mind and body are made to transition all the time. Society may have changed those expectations and acceptances but we once were all nomadic, moving on like herds of animal do still today for food, seasons, resources, opportunities.

As we move forward in life (or backward as some people feel in their lives, at times) we are growing, learning, and building resilience, knowledge, and awareness. We are developing new insights and skills, making new choices and decisions, more informed and often, more purposeful.

As all things change in life, your needs will also change. And this is crucial that we keep meeting those needs and recognise they have changed and will continue to change. Then you can keep up with them, monitoring them, managing them, researching your options and preparing to take opportunities when and as they arise, if they move you in the direction you are heading – choosing to head.

Needs are the basics from sustenance to staying alive: safety and security. And belonging to a family, community, team, nationality. Then come the status and value needs – who we are, what we can offer, and how to offer our natural talents and tendencies to help ourselves and others in the communities we belong to.

We aim to ‘self-actualise’ according to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, where his triangle diagram culminates – that is we explored what we have and can offer, how we can do that, and how we can maintain our own survival and safety, what we personally want to make that happen and (if you can, it helps more) why? Then we can utilise all that knowledge and learning, that awareness and understanding to create the environment where we can thrive rather than just survive.

There are likely to be times you have to ‘just survive’ and get through them but the more you know you want and need, the more likely to find ways to do that. We can be creative, and think out of the box if we have the mind space, and time, support, and guidance to do just that and create a life we love to live.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author. All articles published on Life Coach Directory are reviewed by our editorial team.

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Oldham, Greater Manchester, OL4 5SJ
Written by Julie Crowley, MBACP | Personal Development Coach | Registered Counsellor
Oldham, Greater Manchester, OL4 5SJ

Julie offers personal development life and career coaching for self-awareness, stress management, relationships and communication that identify your options, insights and outlooks. Supporting professional team members and families, self-employed or managers. "Removing barriers, building dreams. Resolving problems, building teams"

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