Have you ever reflected on how you respond to times of change? Are you the type of person who leans in and embraces change? Or do you shy away from it?
The way you adapt in a time of transformation or disruption can make all the difference between being someone who thrives on change, versus merely surviving it.
Let’s start by talking about the difference. Thriving means that your overall sense of wellbeing, fulfilment, success and happiness is positively improved. In contrast, surviving means your wellbeing feels threatened or jeopardised in the face of change.
If you’re merely focused on surviving change, you’re stuck in a fixed mindset. Whereas if your intention is to thrive, you’ll need a growth mindset.
What a growth mindset looks like
Characteristics of a growth mindset include feeling open to change, being curious and looking at all factors when creating a solution. It requires you to be unbiased, objective and forward focused. This way of thinking will bring about the right behaviours during times of change.
What a fixed mindset looks like
On the other hand, characteristics of a fixed mindset include being closed off to change (sometimes without even realising it), being quick to judge, dismissive, cynical and caught in the past. This way of thinking will drive the behaviours that make it difficult to thrive in change.
When adapting to change, the next thing you need to think about is the nature of the change ahead. There are two factors to keep in mind here:
- The speed of the change: will it be gradual or rapid?
- The size of the change: is it going to be small or big?
We go into this in more detail in the graph below.
So what does the graph above tell us?
Fixed Mindset: If your mindset is fixed and the change is gradual and small, we’re going to be very complacent. If the change is small but rapid, we’re going to be resistant.
On the other hand, if the change is gradual but big, we’re going to be dismissive. Most worrying of all, if the change is big and rapid, we’re going to be rigid.
Growth Mindset: So, here are the behaviours that allow us to thrive because we bring a growth mindset. If the change is small and gradual, we are going to be curious. If it’s small and rapid, we’re going to be flexible.
On the flip side, if the change is gradual and big, we’re going to be studious. Best of all, if the change is big and rapid, we’re going to be agile. Being agile is what’s going to allow us to thrive during times of change.
In short, what is it that we want and don’t want?
“Change the way you look at things, and the things you look at change”.
(Dr Wayne W Dyer)
In other words, when we resist change, we hold on. We’re complacent, resistant, dismissive, and rigid and these things stem from a fixed mindset. But when we accept change, we let go.
We become curious, flexible, studious, and agile. These things come from a growth mindset – and it is the growth mindset that will allow us to thrive.
We dive into this in more detail in the video below. Take four minutes to watch and think about how you can better adapt to change.