Adaptability is making smart changes when challenges arise. It’s a mindset that allows entrepreneurs (like you!) to navigate new situations and the inevitable bumps and curves in the journey of life.
Entrepreneurs Emma and Jana know all about adaptability. They developed an online publishing platform and community while living on opposite sides of the world!
While participating in VentureLab’s Spark Mentorship Program, they often had to change their schedule and routine to make things work. Adaptability can take many forms, and you can be adaptable in many different ways. Adaptability might look like:
1. ACCEPTANCE – “This is new. Let’s see what can be done.”
The first step in adapting to a situation involves accepting what is happening. It means that even if we don’t like what is happening, we acknowledge it. This will allow us to move to the necessary steps to adapt to the change.
2. OPTIMISM – “This is going to work out.”
Most of the time, we can’t control the events that bring change into our lives, but we can control how we react and think about those events. Practicing optimistic thoughts when challenges arise is essential to embracing the adaptability mindset. What is an optimistic phrase that you can tell yourself in the face of a challenge? (Learn more about optimism!)
3. SELF EFFICACY – “I can make this work.”
One key to adaptability is self-efficacy, belief in one’s own abilities to do something. In Emma and Jana’s actions, you can hear a belief in both their entrepreneurial idea and in themselves. Even five time zones could not come between them and their goals! Was it easy? No. But they adapted and found a way to make it work.
4. PROBLEM SOLVING – “How do I make this work?”
Problem solving is inherent when adapting to a challenge or a novel situation. We only have to look at our own lives over the past year to see how we adapted during the pandemic. From virtual holiday parties, to online learning, and contactless greetings, people all over the world adapted to a new way of doing everyday things in a different way.
5. COURAGE – “I can do hard things.”
Courage is the ability to do something even when it’s difficult or scary. When adapting to a change, courage is necessary to deal with the situation. Be mindful of how you feel while working through a challenge and if you start feeling overwhelmed, take a break and come back to it later. Check-in with yourself and ask: “What do I need right now?” (Did you know you can practice courage? Learn more!)
Being adaptable is an essential part of entrepreneurship. Whether you show it through acceptance, optimism, self efficacy, problem solving, or courageous, you’re being an entrepreneur!
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