Navigating Change as a Neurodiverse Business Owner

What's it About...

Jonathan Stewart
Jonathan Stewart
Change is hard. We all know that. Whether it's a change in our personal or professional life, transitions can be challenging, anxiety-provoking, and sometimes overwhelming. But what if there was a way to make it easier? What if there was a way to navigate change with ease and efficiency? That's where Transitional Systems come in.

Change is hard. (well duh.)

For the last 8+ years I've slowly been dialling in all my systems and processes and they've served me super well!

But then everything changed when the fire nation attacked when my partner got a job offer that she couldn't (and we didn't want her to) refuse!

With my recent “mini-pivot” and changes in my own business needs it made perfect sense!

However, with change … comes… well change… which everyone in my family (including, and especially me) aren't great at it (thank you neuro-spiciness).

However once we all decided we're gonna do this shit! I had a plan!

Enter: Transitional Systems.

This is basically a fancy word for a bunch of things that work together to help me capture and adapt to new patterns as they emerge, allowing me to support my way of working during periods of transition.

Now everyone works different, so it might be different for you but for me when I'm in transition I need stuff that:

  1. Prioritises Capture
  2. Fast & Effortless
  3. Easy to Break Down.

All of these things allow me to keep productive < (read that. If you groaned at that word ?) whilst understanding that shit is gonna go crazy in my head as during a transition period, everything feels different.

For me, as a neurospicy autistic, change means the following:

  • High anxiety
  • nightmares,
  • other weird stuff that basically saps my energy.

Thankfully the stuff above fits my changing energy levels!


Related Rabbit Hole: Perception & Action Coupling

If you frequent my other podcast, hosted with Internet Academic and fellow nerd Danny Hatcher you'll have heard us talk about this… but for those completely new (which honestly, I assume most of you because this is some really nerdy deep cuts…)

JJ Gibson (the godfather of Ecological Psychology) emphasised that perception is an active and dynamic process, where we view the environment in terms of the opportunities for action it offers. Rather than a step-by-step process of first identifying objects and then taking action, perception and action are tightly coupled processes.

How we see the environment is influenced by how it moves and feels, and we seek opportunities for action based on the information provided by the environment. As we act, we gather new information that informs ongoing perception and action.

I often talk about this in the context of business like so:

Context: The Environment aka:

  • Tools & Tech You Use
  • Audience you're speaking to
  • What you offer in your business
  • Your energy level
  • (other changes)

Context 2: Emotional Environment & Reflection

  • Understanding what you want right now.
  • What you have capacity for.

Action: What you do…

  • The tasks you create
  • The systems you put in place
  • The realisation that things are “in transition” so you need to adapt!

THIS is the theory behind my “Transitional System”


This is the key reason why I care so much about systems, and why I really dislike how other people often teach it…

Systems aren't just something you “should do” to be a good business owner. They're there to support you during the weird times and to help you be more productive and efficient when things are going well.

While these systems won't magically make everything better, they give me just a little bit of space and capacity to see new patterns emerging as I'm learning what new things I'm needing with crazy transitions between changes in both business and life 🙂

What you think of:
Navigating Change as a Neurodiverse Business Owner?

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