Why adaptability is an important life skill

Why adaptability is an important life skill

“It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can manage change”- Charles Darwin

Written by Charles Darwin 130 years ago, the quote still stands true with just one difference, the pace of change is now faster than ever. With the world becoming a global village, the signs of slowing down change are few. As inevitable as it is, any change impacts us both individually and collectively. It brings with it fresh challenges and problems to address and solve. 

Think about your life 10 years ago. Like most people your life would have changed considerably.  We all have our own set of problems and challenges that we dealt with and it made us who we are today. The challenges are both personal and macro- level ones. Loss of someone close to you, change in job, the pandemic will have an impact on your life. We tend to adjust ourselves with these changes and move on in life. This is nothing but the capability to adapt. 

Adaptability makes a difference in the quality of an individual’s personal and professional life. It helps to expand our capacity to handle change, no matter how serious it might be. It also allows us to control our emotions. When we can control our emotions, we can think positively in uncertain situations and come up with reasonable solutions and can move on in life in a much easier way. 

Being adaptable holds a pivotal role for personal success. A longitudinal study by Martin et al. (2015) shows that high school students who demonstrate adaptability have a decreased likelihood of failure compared to students who lack adaptability. Also, a LinkedIn Survey showed that since the past few years, adaptability has repeatedly been  the most important life skill set that all companies are looking for. 

In today’s age, an inability to let go of old, conservative behaviours will ultimately lead to failure. We need to be able to adapt quickly and effectively. Without doing so, we will be left behind in the race.  

Adaptability in its broadest sense, is defined as  the ability to anticipate, adjust and evolve to be effective in your environment’. Here are some strategies to help you be more adaptive:

  • Keeping an open mind
  • Being resilient to change
  • Focusing on short term micro goals 
  • Engaging in active listening
  • Exhibiting emotional intelligence
  • Practising self awareness

By being adaptable, one can instil positivity , increase motivation and sense of gratitude and live a peaceful happy life. 

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