Living Authentically: The Courage to Be Yourself

We’ve heard this phase ‘living an authentic life’ quite often now and I was intrigued about what this meant. So I decided to do a bit of research and found out that living authentically essentially means being true to one’s true self and know themselves inside out. Authenticity simply means embracing who you really are, at your very core, and acting in accordance to your own values and beliefs. Being authentic means coming from a real place within, when actions and words are congruent with beliefs and values. An authentic life involves following one’s passion and being intimately connected to our natural abilities, strengths, and talents. Authenticity may come at a cost, yet it typically leads to a richer, more complete life

Living authentically is not stagnant, it is constantly shifting and taking on new forms. We need to be continually learning about ourselves, challenging old beliefs, letting go of baggage we hold, learn to face and overcome fears and doubts. We need to reach deep inside ourselves and find out what makes us tick, what makes us happy, what makes our spirits soar and our heart just grow large, so we can find that part of ourself that is alive, free and unburdened and once we find that, have the courage to live that life. Authentic living requires us to embrace the reality of our freedom and be responsible for how we choose to live.

I personally believe that being authentic and living an authentic life comes about more as one grows older and hopefully wiser, one learns more about their own true self and starts to become more authentic. When one is younger, you tend to become influenced by your parents, family, peers, friends and what you see and read, both online and offline and to a very large extent, this influences your thinking, ideas and even hopes and aspirations with regard to life.

A way to reach our authentic self is to let go from the past and be grounded into the present because it is only then we can be open, curious and accepting of ourselves and others. Also how we perceive our authenticity is a crucial aspect of who we are. Not only does it significantly influence the pleasure we derive from our experiences, but it also affects our judgment and behavior across all aspects of our life. Authenticity and living a complete and fulfilling life are processes rather than outcomes. Living authentically involves moving in a direction that is most authentic to us as individuals.

Modern technology which is so intrusive and intimately connected to all aspects of contemporary existence, can also impact authentic living. As wearable technology continues to revolutionise the health, wellness, and sports sectors, providing previously unknowable biometric information to the general population, they offer, sometimes doubtful promises to enhance users’ lives.

In the long term, putting on an inauthentic front is tiring and ultimately damaging to our mental and physical wellbeing. So how do we go about learning to live an authentic life?

  • We need to become more aware of what is happening within ourselves, both physically and mentally. A stiff neck may be linked to what is going on in the mind, feelings, thoughts, and difficult decisions.
  • Give up the act of living according to what others expect you to act and do. Living a compartmentalised life and presenting a different version of yourself to different people is extremely draining. Live in line with your values and set clear standards for yourself from which you will not deviate from. Then when you stop pleasing everyone, you can achieve true authenticity.
  • We need to start listening to the inner voice rather than losing it in the noise of others’. Learn to listen to your hopes, dreams, and fears and when I say listen, I mean to really listen to what they are and how you will be able to achieve it.
  • Learn to be comfortable with being vulnerable because there is no authenticity where there is no truth, and there is no truth where there is no vulnerability. Honesty and openness are the oxygen for authenticity to thrive and there is no genuineness without a candid dose of reality first.
  • Know yourself inside out, what you are good at, what you are prepared to do, and what you are not. Face up to the truths of who you are. Honesty is not always pleasant, but it has the potential to free you. Be yourself; be honest and transparent in your dealings. People like and are drawn to those they perceive as sincere and genuine and distrust those who are not.
  • In the same vien, own yourself and your truths. Don’t let others push you into their way of thinking, but also don’t stick to views when you are proved wrong or they no longer work for you. Take responsibility for your choices.
  • Focus on the experiences and connections and not on possessions. Relations, especially meaningful relationships add a value to life that the fleeting and ephemeral value of belongings can’t touch. Ultimately, it all boils down to meaning, possessions only have meaning because of the value ascribed to them. When the tastes or standards change, as they are prone to, the meaning associated with the objects shifts. Long story short, there are very few tangible things that add any real value to life, but investing in people pays significant dividends over time.  Life is about experiences and memories, laughter and love, happiness and healing. But none of those things have any meaning without other people. Our legacy will be the lives we touch and the love we leave behind, everything else all fades away with the sands of time. Building a more authentic life means focusing on what matters.
  • Humility and authenticity go hand in hand. As babies, we don’t brag about our achievements, it’s only as we grow up and our egos start to develop, that we start using our achievements to brag about how important we are. To live a more authentic life, approach everything through the lens of humility and curiosity. Become an explorer, feeling your way through the twists and turns of the jungle that is your journey. It all starts with your willingness to take a step back and cultivate modesty.
  • If you want to live a more authentic life, you’ll have to ditch all that made you comfortable living an inauthentic life to begin with. And that means shifting your priorities. Instead of operating based on the expectations of others, learn to trust your own intuition instead. Charting your own course and blazing your own trail can indeed be scary. But at least you’ll know it serves you best because you trust your own instincts. And that’s what genuineness is all about.
  • Act, don’t react, you can’t live an authentic life if you’re constantly riding on the coattails of what other people are doing.  Instead of following along, take the lead. Instead of living according to everyone else’s expectations, embrace your intuition.
  • Embrace your imperfections. One of the reasons people tend to struggle with authenticity is because they strive for perfection. But perfection is elusive because the bar always gets raised. People tend to drive themselves crazy trying to tweak every little thing about their lives. Accept the messiness and complexity of your reality, that’s what makes for an authentic life.

To check if you are living an authentic life ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do you feel free to make your own choices?
  • Can you express your own views and opinions?
  • Are you able to yourself on a day-to-day basis?

If the answer is No to any of the questions, then reflect on them and also think about this – is this because you are not being true to who you really are?

Also, for those who are parents or will become parents, love your children unconditionally, this means the love is not conditional and does not depend on how the child lives up to a parent’s expectations. Doing this will eventually lead to voices in the head which are constantly critisising and pulling the child down, even when they grow up to become adults.

To live an authentic life, be open to new opportunities and experiences, seek new challenges, and transform the anxiety that forces you to hide into enthusiasm. Engagement can be one of the most positive paths to authenticity. To be real, one must follow their passions while remaining tied intimately to who they are, reflecting their strengths and virtues.

The formula to living authentically is this: Know yourself + Own yourself + Be yourself = The Authentic Life

An Attitude of Gratitude

Gratitude is the quality of being thankful, a readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness. And today this quality is needed more than ever. When one is content with what we have and are thankful for it, it boosts happiness and the overall sense of wellbeing.

When you have an attitude of gratitude, you tend to appreciate everything in life, grateful for relationships, health, work, and have a general sense of well-being. It shifts the focus from yourself to appreciating someone or something else. But this is something that is not innate in human beings, it has to be cultivated and one needs to make it a conscious habit to express thankfulness and appreciation for every part of their life. Having an attitude of gratitude means one operates from a place of abundance, rather than scarcity.

Gratitude shifts the mindset and is a thankful appreciation for what one has, not what one doesn’t have. When gratitude is expressed, one feels more positive and intentional and developing this attitude requires a mindset shift to make it a daily habit. It is important because what one appreciates grows and increases in value, so when one practices gratitude, all that is around, like relationships, work, health and mindset become more important.

Being grateful improves self-confidence, self-esteem and enhances the enjoyment of the present moment. So, when one feels grateful daily, they feel more positive and are more present at the moment.

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An attitude of gratitude means creating a conscious mindset and habit to express thankfulness and be grateful for every aspect of our life, both the things that are going well and the things that aren’t. When one has an attitude of gratitude, they can focus on expanding the positives in their lives, rather than dwelling on the negatives. When one expresses gratitude, they feel more confident, positive, and optimistic as well as happier and joyful about the things they have, and the people that matter most. This mindset reduces stress, overwhelm and frustration and creates feelings of abundance and happiness.

And in addition to improving mood, recent studies show that feeling and expressing gratitude leads to better physical health as well. Paul Mills, a Professor of Family Medicine and Public Health at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine, conducted studies that looked at the role of gratitude on heart health. Among other things, he found that participants who kept a journal most days of the week, writing about 2-3 things they were grateful for, which included everything from appreciating their children to travel and good food, had reduced levels of inflammation and improved heart rhythm compared to people who did not write in a journal. And the journal-keepers also showed a decreased risk of heart disease after only 2 months of this new routine.

Another study from the University of Pennsylvania found that people who wrote and delivered a heartfelt thank-you letter actually felt happier for a full month after, and the same researchers discovered that writing down three positive events each day for a week kept happiness levels high for up to six months.

So how does one develop an attitude of gratitude?

Appreciate everything: To cultivate an attitude of gratitude, look for things to appreciate daily. Developing active gratitude is different from reactive gratitude. With reactive gratitude, one waits for something to happen before they express appreciation or thanks, but with active gratitude, one consciously looks for ways to be grateful and express appreciation. Thus, expressing gratitude becomes a choice. When one express gratitude daily, the things and people they appreciate grow in value and they start to see more things to be grateful for, which in turn makes one happier and more content, increasing positivity and happiness.

Express gratitude every day: It’s important to express gratitude daily, rather than on occasion. Developing a gratitude practice of acknowledging what one is thankful for or appreciate daily will expand the value of the things one is grateful for. A good gratitude practice is to start and end each day by writing down three things you’re grateful for. When one expresses gratitude on a daily basis, one builds positive habits and forces them to appreciate every day, even if was a bad day. It may seem strange initially, especially when you have to think about what you are grateful for that day, but after some time, it gets easier and one can easily find a few things that day to be grateful for. Try it initially for 30 days. Be specific about what you are thankful for and watch how your thoughts develop over time.

Take ownership of your present: Start with appreciating and giving thanks for what you have today and be happy about what you’ve achieved and give thanks to the people in your life which increases gratitude. When one takes ownership of their present moment, they choose to be grateful, optimistic and positive. A positive mindset reframes negative thoughts and builds confidence from past accomplishments.

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Meditate: Meditation is a powerful practice in self-awareness. The goal isn’t to silence your thoughts, rather, it’s to become an active observer of them. The process of meditation is all about allowing the mind to do its thing and accept it as it is. Through meditation, one can build up areas of the brain and rewire it to enhance positive traits like focus and decision making and diminish the less positive ones like fear and stress. When the mind is masters, the emotions become a servant to the mind and one becomes less reactive and better able to handle life’s challenges. Irrespective of whether you regularly meditate, try and take a break a few times a day to focus on a spirit of thankfulness.

Celebrate the small things: Humans are conditioned to focus on and celebrate big achievements, instead of small wins. However, if one fails to ignore the small things in life and keep rushing from one thing to the next, demotivation will quickly set in. Who one becomes is not determined by the end goal, instead, it’s determined by the person they become while going on the journey to reach the goal and life’s successes. When the small things in life are celebrated, it means celebrating good habits. Take time to pause, slow down and savour the small things. Instead of obsessing about the future or dwelling on the past and be more aware of the present moment.

Commit to a gratitude practice: When one commits to a daily gratitude practice, their mindset and thinking changes. When there is an appreciation for the things that matter, there is more insight into what’s important. This, in turn, gives a chance to pause and think about the purpose with clarity on why certain things are important and why certain things and people are valuable. Committing to a gratitude practice helps one understand why they appreciate certain things rather than others and learn about themselves a little bit more. They also get to see the positive effect their gratitude has on others.

So there you have it, a gratitude practice, irrespective of how you do it, has immense benefits. As this practice develops, the habit will eventually bring positivity to our lives and we will feel happier, more positive and learn to appreciate and value all the little happiness in life.

As for me, after researching for this post, I have started to work on my gratitude journal, something I have done off and on for a few years now, but have never followed through consistently. Hopefully, this post will give me that push I need to make it a regular practice.

Mental Agility: The ability to be flexible always

Bill Gates once said, “Success today requires the ability and drive to constantly rethink, reinvigorate, react and reinvent” And this means we have to be alert to constantly be able to react and reinvent ourselves.

The human mind is a very complex matter, and simplifying it may be one of the hardest tasks. Being able to simplify thoughts and transfer them effectively, think on your feet and solve problems in the most efficient way and learn in the most effective manner requires mental agility. Mental agility is the capacity to respond to events in a flexible way and be able to move quickly between different ideas. If you’re mentally agile, you can take in change and find the best course of action to move forward despite unpredictable events. It’s not about having all the answers – but about being confident that you can figure out a new way of doing things to get where you want to go.

One of the key skills today and in the future is mental agility. This ability to switch between tasks and ideas will be a very valuable asset everywhere and especially in the workplace in particular. Mental agility is linked to an area of research called psychological flexibility. Studies have shown that those that have higher levels of psychological flexibility are less likely to be depressed, anxious or stressed and more likely to report well-being in general because of the way they think about situations and how they choose to respond to events.

But how do we achieve it and why is it important for us and our children? One of the most important benefits of an agile mind is the ability to learn fast, however, that’s not all. For children, there are many benefits of mental agility like better problem-solving skills, creativity, the ability to stand up for themselves, calmness, evolved reasoning skills, greater comprehension of events, improved social skills and strong communication skills. For adults, the benefits of mental agility include being more efficient at home and at work, being more organised, feeling less stressed, open to new opportunities and being able to adapt to mandatory changes.

Here are some ways we can use mental agility to thrive in the uncertain world we live in:

Accept the situation: Sometimes things happen that throw us off course and if it’s a change that we’re unhappy about, it’s natural to want to fight against it. However, when the situation is beyond our control, the first thing to do is simply accept the new circumstances we find ourselves in. This isn’t always easy, and it’s OK to process emotions around major shifts in order to get to that acceptance, but the important thing is to acknowledge that we need to move forward in a different way.

Stop and think: We often react quickly and emotionally to unexpected events, which sometimes leads us to act in ways that aren’t useful. I am especially guilty of this and this tip is spot on for me! If you can give yourself some space and time to think before doing anything, it can mean that you approach the situation more strategically. Take at least a few moments to breathe, take in what is going on around you, and ensure your response is appropriate to the situation and not just an automatic panic reaction.

Get creative: When faced with difficulties or in a rut, it’s easy to fall back on using tried and tested ways of dealing with problems but this isn’t always the best solution. Brainstorming ideas, seeking out differing opinions, and thinking about all the different courses of action you could take to solve the issue are some way to see the issue. Consider various possible scenarios and how you could respond to each. If you can, test new approaches and see what works best for you. Sometimes, doing what you’ve always done will end up being the right move, but examining whether you could do things differently will get you in the habit of looking at situations from different angles, which is useful for building your mental agility in the long run.

Have a growth mindset: Believing that you can always continue to learn and develop, even if you’re an expert in your field, helps you keep growing, stay ahead of the competition, and understand what you can do to up your game. A growth mindset is key to mental agility, as it will ensure you regularly challenge your perspective and come up with innovative ways to tackle challenges. It will also help you to view failures as learning opportunities. Not everything you do will always work the first time, but it could be a step in the right direction and you’ll learn something from the experience.

Focus on support: Support is important when building resilience. Building a support network can be challenging in a virtual world, when how we work, socialise and interact with other people has changed so drastically. But having someone to bounce ideas off of, debrief with, or simply who can lend a listening ear, whether that’s a colleague, friend or mentor, can help a person work through a problem and decide how to respond to an event.

Fight Sameness: Expose yourself to the unfamiliar and go places you don’t normally go; read books and see movies that wouldn’t traditionally appear on your list. Stimulate your brain by operating outside your routine. This will allow you to be able to react fast and easily.

Embrace the Unknown: Visualise the problem through a story-board or pro/con list. Ask questions to tease out the problem. Ask questions like what’s missing? What else could be true? Why does that work? Treat mistakes and failures as learning lessons and don’t curl up in a ball if it doesn’t work the first time.

Read More: Reading is great exercise for your brain with varied and impressive benefits. Reading helps relieve stress and it improves cognitive functioning skills. It’s entertaining, it helps increase empathy and it can even improve your memory. So, while unwinding by scrolling social media during your downtime on your phone might be tempting, try picking up a book instead. Reading can help protect memory and thinking skills, especially as they start to decline with age. It slows this decline by improving mental flexibility overall and keeping important parts of the brain working. Research found that the brain scans of individuals who had recently read poetry showed increased activity and connectivity.

Focus on finding lots of possible solutions, not just the best one: Part of the reason why it can be hard to think on your feet is that you want to do a good job and come up with the “right” answer. You’re setting the bar awfully high when you’re overly focused on trying to find the best solution. Instead, start with a brainstorm. Allow yourself to think of as many potential answers or solutions to a challenge that you can. A study from 2011 assessed folks’ levels of divergent thinking by asking them to come up with as many uses for a paper clip as they could. Some came up with 10 or 15 uses, but others generated a list closer to 200. This exercise can help you sharpen your divergent thinking skills. Practice coming up with multiple answers and not just one answer, when challenges come your way. The more you do this, the easier it will become.

Exercise: Regular exercise correlates with a host of physical and intellectual benefits. It boosts your energy, improves your mood and helps you sleep well at night. If you want to boost your mental agility, committing to getting more exercise is a great move. Your exercise routine doesn’t have to be strenuous in order for you to benefit. In fact, studies have shown that walking just two miles a day, five times per week lowers your risk of dementia. And, being in nature also helps to both ease and sharpen the mind. It boosts mood, concentration and overall wellness.

Be protective of your mental energy: Another great way to boost your brain power is to learn to be more careful about how you spend it. Expend your mental energy wisely. Don’t waste it ruminating about things you can’t control. The past is over and there isn’t anything you can do about it. And, you can’t control what others do or think either. So, instead of spending your time and energy worrying about things you can’t do anything about, focus on only those things you can control. You’ll be better prepared for the future if you spend your energy on finding solutions and making preparations. Making a conscious effort to shift your focus isn’t as hard as it sounds. The more you practice being protective of your mental energy, the easier it will become. When you direct yourself away from thinking about things you’ve deemed a waste of time, you’ll begin to form new and healthier habits.

Try new things: Staying in your comfort zone can be relaxing and restorative and there’s certainly a time and place for that. However, you’re more likely to improve your mental agility if you learn something new once in a while. Trying new things can help prevent memory problems in older adults, but there are many benefits to learning new skills, at any age. Challenging yourself with activities that exercise entirely different parts of your brain can help keep you sharp. For example, if you love to do crossword puzzles, keep it up. But, maybe learn chess on the side, too — especially if it’s something that you’ve always wanted to do. If you love to read, try picking up a book from a different genre. You might also sign up to take a cooking class or learn to play a new sport. Pushing yourself to do new things can help boost your mental agility.

Eliminate distractions: Your ability to focus waxes and wanes according to your environment. It stands to reason that it’s more difficult to think clearly when you’re being interrupted all the time. Still, work environments that are rife with these kinds of distractions are still the norm. Minimising distractions can go a long way toward boosting your ability to focus and your mental agility. If possible, set aside a time and place for some quiet and focused work each and every day. It doesn’t have to be for long. Even just an hour of uninterrupted work time can go a long way. Also, when you are doing focused work, try to do just one thing at a time. The science on this is clear — multitasking just doesn’t work. So, don’t try to get more done by doing a bunch of things at once. It won’t work. You’ll be more productive if you focus in on just one task at a time.

Let go of self-consciousness: Nothing kills creativity faster than self-consciousness. It’s impossible to be creative when you’re worried about being judged by others. If you want your abilities to really shine, you have to believe in yourself. Research shows a relationship between self-efficacy — or, your belief in your ability to perform specific tasks — and workplace performance. It turns out that how you see yourself has a big impact on your ability to learn and perform at your best. The voice inside your head is more powerful than you might think. If you’re constantly telling yourself that you can’t do something, it’s going to have an impact. And, the opposite is also true. So, if you really want to strengthen your mental agility and perform at the top of your range at work, be aware of this effect and use it to your advantage. You’ll be better equipped to face the cognitive and intellectual challenges you encounter if you do.

Write down as many approaches as you can: When something happens that requires you to rethink your path forward, focus on working through all possible ways of responding to the situation and put them on paper. Think not only about what you would do, but about how others might respond. Challenge yourself to write as many solutions as you can think of within 30 minutes. Doing this will flex your problem-solving muscles and help you see options more clearly.

Learn from the past to direct your future: Look back at how you have responded to challenges in the past – this is probably something many of us have had plenty of practice with in 2020. What did you do well and what could you do better in the future? Is there anything you would replicate or change about your reactions and behaviour? Write your thoughts down so that you can go back and look at your notes later.

Review and refine: Once a week as you’re working through challenges, take some time to reflect and jot down what has gone well, what hasn’t, and what you’d like to do in the future. This shouldn’t take a long time – while the above is a greater reflection exercise, this should be simple, just a few lines focusing on the here and now. Putting pen to paper will help you understand the situation, boost your self-awareness, and visualise how you can improve.

Hope the above tips will help you (and me) to become more mentally agile as we navigate a volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world.

Adaptability: The Simple Secret to Success and Survival

Today’s world is fraught with risk and uncertainty, of risk and unstability. You just have to look at 2020 to see what I am talking about. Our world is constantly changing and we can’t remain as we were, because if we do, we run the risk of losing out.

According to the Cambridge English dictionary, Adaptability is an ability or willingness to change in order to suit different conditions. What this means is that you need to change or be willing to change yourself so as to adapt yourself to the different situations you will come across in life.

So why is adaptability so important today? I believe it is a life skill that if not innate, should be learnt and fast so that as an individual you are agile and are able to tackle any issues or problems in your life, be it at work or in your personal life. Actually we are constantly adapting. The easiest example I can think is in the kitchen. Sometimes you don’t have all the ingredients at hand while cooking, so we substitute ingredients, adapting in the process.

Adaptability is not just about changing something or adjusting to a situation. It encompasses being able to effect changes in a course of action with smoothness and timeliness, without any major setbacks. For as long as there are many uncontrollable factors in our environment such as laws and economic factors, it is necessary to acquire this skill. It is one of the key skills or factors that keep many multinational companies running and the reason why some professionals are always in demand. This skill is important because as new technology evolves, employers are looking for employees who can demonstrate strong adaptability skills and become company leaders.

Adaptability in the workplace means being able to change in order to become successful. In the work environment, adaptability is a soft skill that refers to the ability to rapidly learn new skills and behaviours in response to evolving circumstances. Employers typically look for adaptability when hiring new staff, and the skill is increasingly included in job descriptions due to its importance for growth and development within a role. Someone who demonstrates adaptability in the workplace is flexible and is able to respond effectively to their working conditions, even in situations where things do not go as planned. They typically work well on their own and with team members. The need for adaptability in the workplace – to learn and unlearn – is crucial to future success.

People in leadership positions are often expected to manage unusual situations without explicit instruction. Therefore, an adaptable leader must be able to resolve problems in a fast-paced environment and trust their judgment when making tough decisions. However, at the same time, still recognising that what worked before may not necessarily work every time. So adaptability is a critical leadership skill and potential leaders need to be adaptable and flexible at all times to succeed.

How important can being adaptable be? Well, the short answer is very, as it’s a skill that has no bounds in the ways it can be applied in the workplace. Being adaptable means working without boundaries, and being open to finding diverse and unexpected solutions to problems and challenges in the workplace. Without limitations on thinking and actions, challenges become something not to dread, but to seize and enjoy working through. An adaptable person gets to engage a variety of people with diverse skills to get the job done and builds broad networks of highly engaged and capable people. An adaptable person also becomes a better leader because such people know that change is inevitable and don’t shy from it and remain positive in the face of adversity, keeping their teams and employees focused and motivated through tough or lacklustre periods. Those who are adaptable and willing to change or shake up conventional ways of doing things will remain relevant throughout their working lives because they’re comfortable experimenting. Workplaces are changing faster than ever before, and if you’re not willing to constantly adapt, then expect to be left behind.

Everyone can all benefit from adaptability but, in an ever-changing world, it is particularly crucial for leaders. Leadership roles become more complex as you progress through an organisation, requiring more subtle influencing and persuading skills. Additionally, as a leader’s seniority increases, they must learn to empower, delegate, form strategic alliances and let go of some of the skills that enabled them to perform effectively in previous roles.

Adaptability skills are skill sets that encompass a person’s ability to adjust to changes in their environment. Being adaptable in your career can mean you are able to respond quickly to changing ideas, responsibilities, expectations, trends, strategies and other processes at work. Being adaptable also means possessing soft skills like interpersonal, communication, creative thinking and problem-solving skills.

As a soft skill, adaptability requires a number of other soft skills in order to be applied successfully. You must be able to learn quickly and put that learning into practice. Additionally, you must be able to recollect what you’ve discovered, so you can identify trends and make decisions accordingly. So what constitutes an adaptability skill?

An ability to learn: People with adaptability skills are never discouraged by failure. For them, failure is just a part of learning. These people are always learning and willing to take risks, as long as it means that they can develop personally and professionally. Skills such as collaboration, critical thinking, research, show continuous Improvement, have an attention to detail, be observant and have a great memory.

Persistence: People who adapt well rarely feel the pressure to quit. Every challenge is exciting, and remaining dedicated to their job means pushing through even when things get hard. Likewise, they are able to stay positive and encourage their team members to stay focused during difficult times. Skills that are emblematic of persistence include resilience, positivity, tolerance to stress, motivation and being able to manage expectations.

Resourcefulness: Often the goal is clear, but the path to get there is not. The traditional way of conducting business may not be possible or effective, because there may not be sufficient funding or staffing. That’s where adaptability can be an asset. An adaptable person will be able to source new resources and techniques that less-adaptable colleagues haven’t considered. An adaptable person will show resourcefulness by demonstrating skills like the ability to notice patterns, be creative and innovative, a problem solver, show initiative and curiosity and budget well.

Curiosity: An adaptable person doesn’t get scared by anything different. If anything, it makes them more curious and they want to investigate it further. They are not afraid of ideas, suggestions, or constructive criticism and often demonstrate open-mindedness, investigation, positivity, active listening, nonverbal communication skills and diversity.

Other skills that showcase adaptability include leadership, integrity, determination, team building, analytical, inductive and deductive reasoning, project management and team work, empathy, resource, conflict and time management, problem solving, strategic thinking and being able to conceptualise, flexibility and commitment, being proactive and open and having excellent negotiation, oral and written communication skills.

Being adaptable can depend on how effectively you communicate with your teammates and managers.

Adaptability is a natural skill, but it can be developed and mastered as well. Here are some tips to help improve this skill:

Observe and monitor changes in the environment: People do not see the need for a change until they notice changes in the environment. Adaptability must not be easy, but timely as well. Always make a conscious effort to monitor trends, values and attitudes and compare present observations with past ones and find out what has changed.

Develop a growth mindset: Being adaptable also means being willing to learn and try new things. Developing a growth mindset can positively influence the ability to take on new challenges, find new opportunities to develop knowledge and contribute to new projects. The willingness and motivation to keep improving skills can also show potential and current employer a commitment to professional growth.

Be willing to learn: Observation alone is not enough. If the result of observations suggests a need to learn something new, do not hesitate to do so. While people can learn some things on their own when furnished with appropriate educational resources, others may require tutorials from specialists. Don’t decline to use the services of a professional tutor if necessary.

Avoid procrastination: Don’t just be willing to learn. Take the necessary course of action. Remember that adaptations are more effective when the action is taken earlier.

Acknowledge the fact that changes are bound to occur: Though it is difficult to let go of norms, it is people who matter, not an individual.

Set goals for one’s self: Another method that can help develop adaptability skills might be to set personal goals to improve those aspects of the skillset that are felt to be lacking so the individual can improve their overall ability to adapt to changes in the workplace.

Ask for feedback: As people develop throughout their your career, they might think about requesting feedback or constructive criticism from managers to help them improve on their weaker skills. Positive and constructive feedback can be beneficial for setting goals and achieving success in their career.

Learn to acknowledge and accept change: It can also be highly beneficial to accept change as it occurs. Learning to acknowledge changes in their career can help prepare and adapt to differing circumstances. Additionally, learning how to be willing to accept change can be an effective step toward recognising when adjustments need to be made to make transitions smoother.

Other than the above, some additional tips to help adaptability skills in the workplace include asking for clarifications from peers and superiors to help better process transitions when there are changes to processes, procedures or operational practices. Offer to request for opportunities to work on tasks that may be new or offer to take on responsibilities that require creative approaches. If sharing your ideas with colleagues is something that causes anxiety, set a goal to contribute to team meetings and collaborations. Try getting all aspects of work organised like documents, paperwork, projects and other work information, so everything is prepared in case there are transitions within a job.

An individual can also highlight adaptability skills on resumes or cover letters by showing concrete examples of successes due to these skills. During an interview, highlight adaptability skills by providing the interviewer with examples of how these were applied in past roles and use past experiences and achievements to help answer the interviewer’s questions in a way that shows adaptability.

Being someone who is adaptable is a skill that will stand in good stead all your life, whether in the personal or professional life. Learning how to adapt to change is a soft skill that will not only make the individual a top candidate when applying for roles, but one that has the capacity to give them a renewed optimism about work. It’s a brilliant life skill that has great application in both personal and professional life, so if an individual does not yet have those skills, its time to start implementing these tips to strengthen the adaptability skills today.