We spend a lot of time planning. We plan our days. We plan for the future. We create a vision for ourselves that details how things will play out.
But what if something doesn’t go the way we planned?
Well, there’s two options. The first involves sitting around wondering why things didn’t work out the way we had wanted. The second? Adapting.
Spending our time and energy adapting and exploiting the outcomes we’re left with will offset the stress that comes with the situation.
If we commit to being mindful, it becomes easier to adapt to whatever happens in the moment. We avoid the stressful thoughts about the impact it could have on us and what it might mean for our future.
Instead, we make the best of it and move forward in a positive, efficient manner.
It seems that too often we choose the wrong option when it comes to coping with life’s difficulties. It’s no easy task, but if you teach yourself to take the adaptation road, your quality of life will skyrocket.
Why Should I Adapt?
The ability to adapt, especially during stressful times, is an underrated skill.
Imagine getting relocated for work tomorrow and having to maneuver a new location with new people and surroundings. It would take a high level of adaptability and strong mindset to make it work.
Another prime example of adapting is something we can all relate to – this year’s quarantine, as a result of COVID-19.
The global pandemic reared its ugly head through the U.S. in March, with a stay-at-home order mandated into June. The uncertainty associated with the virus left everyone with an uneasy mental state. It forced us to adapt to new, unprecedented cirumstances.
The degree of difficulty you endured, and are still enduring, throughout this time likely depends on how well you adapted. Granted, some people had more challenging quarantines than others, but the logic still applies.
This is proof that how well you adapt to something will determine how well you live during the time in which it occurs. If you make the best of it and focus your energy on finding a bright side, the result will be much less dreary.
Your mindset is instrumental in making this possible. Rather than waking up each day and fighting what’s going on around you, make a commitment to become one with it while figuring out a way to grow and learn. There is always beauty hidden in the struggle.
Once your mind no longer associates these unfortunate events with pain and suffering, it can get back to helping you live your best life in spite of the hardships.
The benefits of learning how to effectively adapt speak for themselves. It can elevate your ability to handle all challenges that are thrown your way. It’s simple: adapting the right way makes life easier.
How To Adapt
In an article from Harvard Business Review, they list six effective ways to master adaptation, relative to change:
- Find the humor in the situation.
- Talk about problems more than feelings.
- Don’t stress out about stressing out.
- Focus on your values instead of your fears.
- Accept the past, but fight for the future.
- Don’t expect stability.
These six tips can aid the process of adaptation in life. Take a few and apply them to a troubling situation next time. Numbers three, four and five seem imperative to a good approach when dealing with change.
There is no gain in stressing out about stressing out. Instead, delegate your energy elsewhere and shift your focus to how you can buck the trend and combat the stress you’re already experiencing.
Keeping your attention on core values rather than fears helps to accomplish this. Let your fears pass by and trust your values when it comes time to adapt. This ensures you doing the right thing based off your beliefs, making it easier to accept whatever happens.
Speaking of acceptance, the fifth tip puts an emphasis on what has happened and what will happen. Accept what has already happened to you and figure out how to overcome the temptation of dwelling on it. Then, fight for the best possible outcome.
Number six is a bonus tip to always remember. Life will never be stable all the time and neither will your emotions. Allowing yourself time to analyze the situation and release your feelings prior to adapting is normal. The key, however, is to make sure you get to that point as soon as your ready so the negative effects of instability don’t weigh on you for too long.
These tips are a good rule of thumb. You can also start writing down things you are having a hard time adapting to. Once you have that, log your feelings towards it, along with how you plan to cope with it.
This will help you figure out what you need to change in order to enhance the outcome and make the situation better for you. Doing this in repetition will eventually result in consistent, positive adaptation.
Adapting boils down to your mind. Strengthening your mind and working on seeing the positives and growth opportunities in your struggles will make it much easier. Life is too short to let change or hardship negatively impact your ability to live life to the fullest.
The Wrap Up
Adapting to life’s ups and downs will steady your focus on what’s important rather than worrying about the change itself.
It’s easier said than done, especially depending on the adjustments that are required. That’s why it’s so important to practice adapting and create a system that you can use in every situation, regardless of severity.
It’s also important, once you adapt, to do so with the intention of adapting to win rather than just get by.
If you go so far as to conquer the feelings of doubt and change, make sure to fully submerge and make it a 180 degree turnaround in the other direction. Leave the worry behind and transform it into growth.
You will always be tested and challenged in life. Learning adaptability and how to roll with the punches will eliminate some stress and produce more happiness.
“Adaptation is a profound process. It means you figure out how to thrive in the world.”