Last week we talked about resilience in terms of DNA. We know that the DNA of resilience, links to certain personality traits in humans. Indeed, in Patrick L Iverson’s book “Molecular Basis of Resilience – adaptation to a changing environment”, he states that “A hint of genome plasticity, an apparent reflection of adaptability”, is “present at the DNA level”.
This week I want to expand on one of the elements considered important in being resilient. Adaptability.
What do these traits look like in a person and how do they relate to resilience?
Adaptability is defined in the dictionary as the “quality of being able to adjust to new conditions” or “to change or be changed to fit circumstances.” Traits of adaptability are described according to the following article
- They embrace change and accept that change in their lives is inevitable.
- Adaptable people see opportunities where others see failure.
- They are resourceful.
- Adaptable people think ahead.
- They don’t whine
- Adaptable people talk to themselves
- They don’t blame.
- Adaptable people don’t claim fame
- They are curious
- Adaptable people stay current
By its very definition to adapt is to grow and change. Consider this; a resilient person will strive to think differently from how they have always thought. So what they once believed as right might need to be forgone to adapt and grow. They adapt to a new way of thinking that keeps them from stagnating.
Doing the same thing each day because you think “this is what is right” may not be the adaption in thinking you need to progress past a problem; deal with an issue; or change your life. Challenge this thinking, is it right or is there another way of thinking about this? Adapt your thinking, and you will have a new “right” and a new way forward. This is not easy. Those with adaptable personalities
If they can’t change or influence a decision, they–yep, you guessed it—they adapt and move on.
You cannot remove resourcefulness from people if they have this personality trait already. Resourcefulness means finding solutions in the absence of resources. Resourceful people tend to have a plan A, B, and C. This contingency planning is part of a resilient person.
Self Talk is another important component of a resilient and adaptable personality. The positive self-talk will assist the adaptive person. It helps them in moving through problems with less angst. I recently wrote about the importance of self-talk and believe it is the single greatest habit that anyone can develop. See my blog here:https://tonilontis.com/2019/02/18/self-talk-and-why-is-it-so-important/
Blame is the act of not taking responsibility for yourself and your actions in any given situation. The adaptable and resilient person does not blame others and uses a situation where they have failed or done something wrong to learn, grow and move on.
I love the curiosity trait in people, probably because my curiosity brings
By staying up to date with life in general we aren’t “sticking our heads in the sand” so to speak. We are engaged with the world we live in, curious to see what the latest thinking is on a particular idea, what the latest inventions are, what the latest research states, what’s the latest science? We are therefore more likely to be adaptable to change. Staying up to date will challenge your thinking but it will also improve your resilience to life. You will be open to considering change.
Just like a lion is adaptable in its approaches to getting a meal, so we humans need to learn the skill of being adaptable. It will make you more resilient to the ups and downs of this life we live, at the pace, we live it.