Swim Jump Fly and the resources to navigate change

Charlotte Sheridan
5 min readJul 8, 2023

In 1789 the American statesman Benjamin Franklin wrote, “In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes”, except he’d left out another certainty… change. Change is a great leveller which moulds our existence, whatever we do, wherever we live, whoever we are… so we need to be ready to deal with it.

How we equip ourselves to do this was the question I investigated during 2019–2020 when I interviewed 108 people from 27 countries. From Australia to Saudi Arabia and USA to Brazil, participants shared stories of how they successfully navigated change, from small pivots to full-on transformations. You can read three participant narratives at the end of this article*.

Once I’d gathered data from 75 hours of interviews, I undertook a Thematic Analysis (Braun and Clarke, 2006**) and discovered clear themes, such as the resources participants relied on during times of change. These resources included:

  • Mindset — how participants viewed change/belief in their ability to work through it;
  • Health — via sport/exercise, food/hydration, rest and mental health;
  • Other resources such as skills, money, and reality checks (e.g. asking “was this the right time to take on a change project?”);
  • People who helped the participants on their journey; as well as
  • Inspirations that kept them going.



Charlotte Sheridan

Psychologist, coach, writer, photographer… juggling them all but often dropping balls.