Recently I received an email where I was asked, “You've mentioned the "Why didn't I do this sooner?" feeling after a lifeshift has been made. I've had frustrations for years, and I find it amazing that I've coasted along for so long. Things weren't all that bad. I just couldn't think of any other alternatives. Sure, I've had lots of micro-adventures along the way, and I was doing interesting things in my free time, but the problem remained - most of my time and energy was being spent on a job that didn't really fulfill my doing-something-really-meaningful needs. A thought: Is there some benefit to coasting along, or is it just another example of the laws of inertia? ... or is it both?”
I wrote that I'd done my fair share of coasting too. I think it's a good point that inertia could be mixed in with something useful too. One useful function of 'coasting' is to build up 'pressure' so that when you finally make the change you stick at it through the bad times. In Japan when they teach aikido they let you make the same error many times until they correct you- that way you remember it better and are more grateful. If a foreign teacher appeared they'd always correct straightaway and the student would go back to the old way the next day.
Secondly coasting can often be useful later, in unlikely ways. The time I spent driving a delivery van in London gave me good driving skills, a load of stories and material I later wrote about- so you never can tell.
Having said all that, there really is never a perfect time to change, only a possible one. You can expect possibilities but expecting perfection is a little too much!