There’s nothing quite like a global pandemic to make you rethink your values and reframe your priorities.
Prior to COVID-19, if you had asked me what I wished for my children, I wouldn’t have hesitated to answer that I wanted them to be happy. A nice neat answer which is meaningless when you really interrogate it. Happiness is never a consistent state; it is a momentary feeling that we experience from time to time as we move through the challenges of life.
Having had time to reflect, I would wish them instead to have good judgement and be adaptable; qualities which are less fleeting and far more important in a constantly changing competitive world. What COVID-19 has highlighted for so many is that if you aren’t adaptable, you quickly get left behind. In this modern era, being adaptable means that you are less overwhelmed by change and can develop the self-belief to regularly embrace new challenges. In doing so, you become an infinitely more valuable employee / leader / parent.
So, what is the best way to embrace adaptability? For starters you can learn from your peers. Ask them questions which hone your skills and don’t be scared to make mistakes. Actively seek out new opportunities which change your perspectives and challenge you to adapt. Be a great listener. Luckily, these evolutionary traits are part of our DNA.
Ironically, once you become comfortable in a flexible, adaptive state and you can let go of the stress of change, you will find that increased happiness is a natural extension.
‘Life is difficult. This is a great truth, one of the greatest truths. It is a great truth because once we truly see this truth, we transcend it. Once we truly know that life is difficult – once we truly understand and accept it – then life is no longer difficult.’