Adapting to Change During Critical Times

If you log onto almost any social media platform, you’ll see countless posts – both text and video – where people are in the throes of anxiety due to some sort of change. It’s no longer something people keep hidden behind closed doors.

But this helps shine a light on a very real problem – the number of people ill equipped to handle situations when it deviates from whatever they consider their norm. No matter where you live or how much money you make, change is going to happen. 

Life will throw a curveball sooner or later. For some people, it happens constantly and for others, more rarely. But when it hits, you must be capable of being resilient and not crumbling amid the chaos.

The changes you’re likely to experience can be related to career, relationships, health – or even something outside of your control like politics or a societal issue. Change isn’t always bad, either – it can be positive, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t stressful. 

Adaptability is about not allowing these changes to make you fearful, confused or despondent. If you’re someone undergoing many changes at once, you have to alleviate the stress that’s building up so you aren’t living in a pressure cooker situation where you’re filled to the brim with anxiety. 

Becoming resilient and being able to adapt to change is a learned skill – it’s not something you’re born with. You have the ability to stand strong and rise above any emotional turmoil stemming from an event or issue that will bring others to their knees. 

Pulling Yourself Out of a Fixed Mindset

Life is going to evolve with twists and turns, whether you’re ready for it to happen or not. You don’t want your happiness determined by whether or not you’re capable of adapting to these changes. 

When you have a fixed mindset, incapable of growth, you end up overly stressed, riddled with anxiety. This can cause you to have health issues, miss out on wonderful opportunities, and keep you stuck in a place no one wants to be. 

There are many reasons so many find themselves unable to cope with change. Sometimes, you just worry about the unknown – you what if everything until you’re exhausted. 

Other times it’s because you feel comfortable where you’re at – even if it’s not the best place for you. It’s what you know. Or it might be the fact that you feel an emotional response to the change – an inherent resistance to anything unfamiliar or out of the ordinary. 

By teaching yourself adaptability skills, you’ll be able to embrace these challenges and face them head on. You won’t live in a state of unease and fear 24/7. A fixed mindset can be crippling.

Any change is basically viewed as a threat, so you’re always in a heightened state of negative emotions. You may feel helpless and stubborn. Part of becoming adaptable is being able to grow and see change as a stepping stone and an opportunity. 

This is true even if it’s a hard issue to deal with. Negative situations can result in you achieving a sense of peace and acceptance, in developing new skills to help you navigate the situation, and more. 

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Start Studying Your Emotional and Physical Reactions

Once you’ve made the decision to change your thought process, you have to first take a look at how you react to change. You might be tired of always feeling stressed out or unable to cope whenever something new happens. 

But get more specific. Become aware of your reactions and emotions. When you’re doing this activity, don’t be judgmental. Just observe and make note of how you think and react outwardly. 

Change might make you have physical reactions like a rapid heartbeat or inability to sleep. It might just be emotional, where you feel more worried or angry not being in control. 

Pay attention on your journey to building resilience and look for small successes and setbacks. The little wins – like realizing you didn’t stress out over something – can make you stronger, while setbacks serve as a learning mechanism for the next time. 

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How to Make Yourself Resilient to Big Changes

There are things you can do to fortify your emotional and physical reactions. You’re not stuck with this forever. Figure out what your support system is and whether or not it’s a healthy one. 

Sometimes, people might be well-meaning, but they feed into your reactions and continue your cycle rather than help you break free from it. If you’re turning to public social media profiles to vent and react, you might find a combination of support and toxic confrontations that add to your stress levels.

You need a solid support system, whether it’s made up of a therapist, life coach, mentors, friends, family, and doctors who can help you. It’s not always a person, but a tool that provides support. 

You might use guided meditation apps to calm your nerves and fortify your resolve. You can also engage in exercise that boosts both your physical and mental well-being. Even soothing self-care practices can make you more capable of handling change with ease.

***To Adapt, Grow, Thrive … Be Like Water!***

Stay Informed – Don’t Bury Your Head in the Sand

There are many who prefer to stay oblivious about changes. They don’t go to the doctor because they don’t want to hear bad news. They don’t watch the news because it’s depressing. 

They don’t rock the boat in their relationship even if they’re not happy because it would be too difficult to face. But this is no way to live. You don’t want to be uninformed – you want to be capable of navigating change. 

One way to do this is by committing to information and learning. The more you know, the more confident you’ll feel in handling something, even if it’s negative or unnerving. You can be informed through reading blogs, news sites, forums, books – or watching videos and listening to podcasts. 

The key is to find the right resources that discuss issues calmly and don’t use predatory tactics like clickbait and traumatic scare tactics to get your attention. It’s a good idea to scout out a wide variety of resources for the things that worry you most so that you feel armed with information and sensible solutions. 

Adapting to Changes in Core Areas of Your Life

So let’s look at a few ways change is likely to affect you and what you can do to strengthen your ability to handle it. Workplace changes or changes in career can cause increased anxiety. 

You might have to learn how to embrace new technologies or learn a new position – one that you’re not used to. Don’t rest on your laurels in these instances – vigorously pursue knowledge about what you need to do to be competitive, stay employed and maintain your leadership. 

Take some online courses, reach out to others in your industry and begin networking to have connections, and attend events that keep you ahead of the competition. From time to time, you might even go on interviews without any intention of changing careers – just to keep honing your skills and gaining confidence for when a change occurs. 

If it’s something about your relationship that results in you freezing up and being unable to cope, don’t carry on another day without  learning how to deal with life transitions. You might be navigating a divorce or new marriage, the addition of children, and so on. 

Relationships can be rocked by a lack of communication skills or boundaries so you have to know how to be strong and clear in your ability to handle the ups and downs that come along. 

This can be done by learning and practicing different ways to talk through situations with others and say no whenever you feel like you’re being taken advantage of or being subjected to behaviors that aren’t beneficial to you. 

You can read books that teach these skills, or find a local (or online) therapist who is trained at dealing with couples counseling or family issues. You might even find a workshop for your particular situation that empowers you with the knowledge you need to handle it better. 

There are other events that may happen in your life. It could be a loss of someone you love, an illness that feels catastrophic, or even a relocation necessity that uproots you from everything you’ve known. 

You have to maintain a positive outlook and find meaning in the change that is meant to shape your life. You can’t dwell on what you’re losing, but shine a light on what you gained or will gain. 

There might be group counseling sessions or support groups you  can attend to find camaraderie with others going through the same thing. Even an online forum might provide insight that makes you feel better about the situation. 

If you’re being relocated for some reason, spend time learning all there is to know about how locals live in the new area. Find groups on platforms like Facebook or Meet Up and get to know your new neighbors before you even move (or soon after). 

If you’re the kind of person who gets frazzled by change that’s really out of your control – like the fear mongering issues splayed across the TV when media discusses politics, societal issues and global conundrums, you have to find a way to stay informed without feeling controlled and helpless. 

You want to limit your exposure, but not be completely out of the loop. Don’t spend hours doomscrolling on TikTok watching videos of war, riots, political commentary and other items. 

It’s like being on a diet to lose weight – you need food, but not so much food that it makes you unhealthy. The same goes for news. Stay informed, but don’t damage your emotional stability with excess. 

Resilience and the ability to adapt to change not only comes from learning and applying healthy emotional habits, but by engaging in self-care strategies like getting plenty of sleep, exercising and eating right. 

Whatever you do, promise yourself that you won’t stay stuck. You won’t just sit there and live in turmoil over what might happen. Instead, you’ll take action to work on being resilient to change, and empower yourself to navigate life with a healthy outlook.

Ready. Set. Go!

Now that you’ve explored the multifaceted ways to bolster your adaptability in the face of change, it’s time to take action. Don’t let uncertainty or fear hold you back—unlock your true potential by understanding your adaptability quotient. This self-awareness can be your secret weapon to thriving in a world of constant flux.

Ready to measure your adaptability and transform your approach to change? Discover how adaptable you truly are and gain personalized insights to enhance your resilience. 

Embrace the future with confidence. Adapt. Grow. Thrive.

Click here to know your Adaptability Quotient (AQ) now!

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TOP RATED PODCAST ABOUT THE FUTURE OF WORK

First things first: what does grit even mean? You’ve probably heard the advice “when the going gets tough, the tough get going” attributed to coach Kunte Rockne. That quote captures the essence of grit.  The character trait of grit often refers to passion, the consistency of interest, and perseverance, the ability to endure tough times.

For instance, we’ve all experienced setbacks. They could range from struggling to learn a new skill, recovering from an injury, losing a job, or even bankruptcy.

What Does Grit Look Like?

People with high levels of Grit are confident in achieving long-term goals. They are often described as ‘determined’ and ‘hard workers’. No-pain-no-gain might be the grit motto. Gritty people tend to keep going until the work is done. They take pride in finishing what they start. Their mental focus and emotional stamina are very high. They don’t let short-term gains, negative feedback, or hectic schedules deter them. People with high grit are not discouraged easily; they see setbacks and obstacles as challenges that can be overcome with commitment and hard work. Grit, however, is not always a good thing. Gritty people are often so focused on their goals that they get blinded-sided by outside influences and have blind spots when it comes to alternative ideas. 

People with low levels of grit give up quickly. Setbacks and obstacles easily discourage them. When change happens they can find it difficult to stay on course with long-term goals. They flee at the first sign of trouble and often blame others. They start a lot of projects but get discouraged easily. 

How Grit Can Help Your Business

Why is grit something you need to look for when hiring and developing employees? The future of work is full of opportunity but the journey will be anything but certain. Perseverance and passion will be needed in abundance. These are some scenarios where employees with grit become a beneficial trait for your company.

They Understand That Good Things Take Time

Millennials have often been criticized for their need for instant gratification. While it might be true for some of them, grit had to be part of this generation’s makeup. Now in their 30s and 40s, they have endured school shootings, 9/11 terrorism, and the Great Recession…and they are now growing and thriving. It’s only human to get frustrated when we don’t see the instant rewards from our work. Contributing to a project day in and day out, and not getting recognition or confronting bureaucratic idiocy, is disheartening. Many employees may be tempted to just quit.

If your employee has grit, however, they know good things take time. Setbacks are not failures, but part of the journey.  When personal interests align with goals, it’s easier to persevere and feel that your efforts will be rewarded. People with grit stay and push through.