Change is a part of life.
We say that all the time, but rarely do we really stop to think about it. Like, really think about it.
For good or bad, the truth is that life is changing at a faster rate than ever; shockingly fast.
As noted by Harvard Business Review, it took the telephone almost 65 years to reach 40% of households in the US. Yes, 65 years.
Smartphones, on the other hand, had the same level of adoption in just a decade.
This isn’t a case study, though. Who cares about smartphone adoption rates, right?
We all should.
The increases in the development of technology and the increasingly rapid adoption rates of such technologies will affect us all.
In 2020, the World Economic Forum predicted that 50% of all employees will need reskilling by 2025.
And according to a McKinsey study, generative AI will cause a whopping 12 million people to swap jobs by 2030.
These stats tell us something that we simply can’t ignore: being adaptable is more important than ever.
It’s not those who are the best at what they do today that will necessarily survive and prosper; it is those who are most adaptable.
Are you adaptable enough for what’s coming?
Today, we cover 5 signs you are more prepared for change than most.
Let’s dive in.
1) You are a lifelong learner
The desire to continually acquire knowledge and skills, irrespective of age or stage in life, is a clear-cut sign of adaptability.
If you regularly find yourself picking up new books, attending workshops, or enrolling in courses just out of sheer curiosity or to upskill, you’re embodying the spirit of adaptability.
With countless jobs set to disappear sooner than many might imagine, this habit of soaking up new knowledge and developing new skills will be crucial.
When the time comes, most will resist change for fear of it.
But in the end, they will be forced to learn…or face the unpleasant consequences.
Learning as a natural habit is a distinctive advantage.
It can enable you to be proactive rather than reactive, as well as allow you to more smoothly navigate the changing landscape of work and life.
While being a lifelong learner is admirable and important, the next sign is proof that you can actually put it into action.
2) You have made a career change
Making a significant career change is one of the most tangible, and relevant, signs of adaptability.
Whether you’ve transitioned from finance to fashion, tech to teaching, or any other leap across industries, making a career change shows a willingness to venture out of your comfort zone and embrace new challenges.
As you probably know, a career shift is not a simple move.
If you’ve successfully navigated one, it’s evident you possess the resilience, openness, and versatility that will be required sooner or later.
Also, having diverse professional experiences will likely be a huge advantage in the coming years.
If you have had several positions in different industries, you’ve probably developed a unique blend of skills and insights that allow you to approach challenges with a broader, more informed viewpoint.
3) You welcome feedback
Feedback, whether positive or negative, is a goldmine of information, providing insights into areas of strength and opportunities for growth.
But the truth is most people reluctantly accept it as a part of their job and life rather than actually using it to improve.
They do the bare minimum to satisfy their boss or partner or whatever. But they could do so much more.
If you, however, actively seek out feedback, listen to it without defensiveness, and use it as a tool for self-improvement, you have a higher level of adaptability than most.
On the other hand, if you are one of the countless who dread that review meeting with your manager, it’s never too late to start embracing it.
It’s just a change in mindset.
It means recognizing that there’s always room for improvement and growth. It means valuing external perspectives that can shine a light on blind spots or offer new ways of approaching a problem or task.
By fostering this mindset and viewing feedback as a gift rather than a threat, you will set yourself up to be more adaptable than most.
Some might not like this next sign, but deep down, you had to know it was coming, and it can’t be ignored.
4) You embrace new technologies
As mentioned at the beginning of this post, technology is advancing at an unprecedented rate.
New tools, platforms, and systems emerge regularly, changing the way we work, communicate, and live.
And many don’t truly embrace these tools.
I am not just talking about your grandmother or your father, who will be retired in five years.
A lot of us younger folks love it when a new iPhone is released and look forward to having a few extra pixels to take selfies with.
However, when it comes to work and things that really affect us, many resist or feel overwhelmed by the rapid pace of technological change.
If you’re someone who sees technological advancements as an opportunity, eagerly adopts these changes, and can quickly integrate them into your daily life, it will stand to you in the coming years.
It’s not just about the tech skills, though. It’s about the mindset.
A willingness to embrace technological advancements reflects a broader, and necessary, openness to change and evolution.
5) You have lived abroad
Living abroad is an adventure, a challenge, and, above all, a test of one’s adaptability.
Having lived abroad for the past decade, I can tell you firsthand that immersing oneself in a new country, with its distinct culture, language, and norms, is a profound experience that demands flexibility at every turn.
If you’ve taken the plunge and made a life in a foreign land, even for a short period, it’s a clear sign of your adaptable nature.
When you live abroad, everyday tasks become lessons in adaptability. Navigating public transportation, shopping for groceries, or even striking up a conversation can be a whole new ballgame.
But by facing and overcoming these challenges, you develop a heightened sense of awareness and resourcefulness.
Moreover, living in a different country exposes you to diverse viewpoints and ways of life, broadening your horizons and teaching you to approach situations with an open mind.
This global perspective, combined with the practical skills honed from daily experiences abroad, makes you uniquely equipped to handle the change and uncertainty that is coming.
The bottom line
Being adaptable today isn’t just about thriving; it’s crucial for survival.
The signs highlighted are clear indicators that you’re more adaptable than most, and this is undeniably a strength.
If you don’t relate to the signs above, however, it’s never too late to foster an adaptable mindset.
That said, with the figures we saw earlier, it’s probably best to do it sooner than later.
As always, I hope you found this post interesting to read and valuable.
Until next time.