What are the life stages in the journey of life?

Each phase of our life holds its distinct characteristics and its unique opportunities for acquiring the qualities that pertain to those years: the footloose freedom in our early 20s, goal achievement in our 30s, soul-searching self-reflection in our 40s … and so on.

We tend to think about age categories as decades: periods of 10 years. But scientific and spiritual research has shown that our life’s journey is, in fact, subdivided into 7-year cycles; each distinct from the other yet interlinked in the life cycle with each phase handing on a guiding quality to the next.

Where are you on your journey? Click on the age groups below to see.

21 – 2828 – 3535 – 42
42 – 4949 – 5656 – 63
21 - 28 The Adventurers - Dr Janin Vansteenkiste21 – 28

These are the years of the explorer’s spirit. A time to try everything at least once. A time to go and see different places and meet different people. To travel, to sample a variety of cultures and relationships, and indeed also a variety of jobs. Back to Top
Managers - Dr Janin Vansteenkiste28 – 35

These years are marked by a managerial approach to our life and career. Constructing and consolidating our goals, according to our own convictions about life. Back to Top
Cocooners - Dr Janin Vansteenkiste35 – 42

In this phase, we turn our focus from the outward bound to the core within. We ask: Is what I am doing making me feel satisfied? Is it still meaningful? It is a time fo deep self-reflection; insulated, often uncomfortable, but necessary before we embark on the second half of our life. Back to Top
Innovators - Dr Janin Vansteenkiste42 – 49

It is high time for the butterfly to emerge from the cocoon! Taking initiatives, tapping into our unused or latent talent. Making changes based on our values, faith and beliefs. Back to Top
Leaders - Dr Janin Vansteenkiste

49 – 56

The major challenge of this phase is leadership. Leadership as it can manifest in many different settings: private life and the various social networks to which one belongs, at work, in the family and specifically in the parent and child relationship.

All along, gender spells out great variety in how men and women travel the journey of life. This specific leadership phase holds ultimate potential for women, to come in to their own and make bold and confident contributions to the world. Menopause is not ‘the end’ but a rite of passage to power.

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Eagles - Dr Janin Vansteenkiste56 – 63

In these leadership years, we survey the landscape all around us with eagle-eyed perspective. We ask ourselves: What is our legacy? High in the mountains, we have a panoramic view of life and can guide others. Our power now serves to empower others. Back to Top
Baobab Tree - Dr Janin Vansteenkiste63+
Baobab Trees

Getting older, we wonder about what is still possible and how much time we have left. The challenge of aging is complex. It holds its own mystery and potential. We can be inspired by unstoppable elders, who – like majestic Baobabs – endure and inspire. We strive to become fully human and truly inspirational ourselves.  . Back to Top

Dr Janin’s book “A Lifetime of Personal Power” explores the challenges and opportunities of each of the 7-year phases we travel on our life’s journey. This second edition includes a new chapter on the 63+ life stage as well as new material to engage and challenge the reader.