How To Improve Your Flexibility In Our “Adapt Or Die” World

Terms like “agile workplace” and “agile development” have been big buzzwords over the past few years. Because technology evolves so quickly, so too must we – as leaders and as companies.

We have to be able to respond quickly to what is needed in the marketplace and expected by our clients. Peek around the corner, and you will see the many, many changes that are coming. You can adapt to them, or you can fight them and risk becoming irrelevant.

So the question is, how much of your emotional well being do you want to devote to something that you cannot control? Little to none! Instead, tap into your EQ to greatly improve your flexibility, whether you need to become more flexible or less.

Let’s take a look at the flexibility continuum. A person with low flexibility:

  • Thinks, “It’s my way or the highway”
  • Might not even hear you out
  • Won’t consider doing it in a new way – no matter how strong the argument

A person with high flexibility:

  • Is easily swayed to try something new – frequently
  • Cannot stick to any one thing for very long
  • Lacks urgency

Follow these tips to find greater balance in your level of flexibility.


Remember that there is more than one right answer

Before you say no to trying something new, ask yourself, “What could be the other right answer?” Make a list of options. You might choose to follow a new idea, or you might decide to stick with what you’re doing.

Encourage yourself to choose something new

Say to yourself, “Today, I’m going to do one thing different.” Start small, like grabbing a different coffee mug out of the cabinet or trying a new restaurant on date night with your spouse. Keep adding to this list. You’ll soon start to become more flexible.

Stick to your plan

If you say you’re going to do something, stick with it. You could announce a change, such as telling your team that you’re going to adopt a new meeting format from now on – and then you have to keep your word. Or, you could hear out a suggestion, such as seeing a different movie with your friends, and respond with a simple, “Great idea, but let’s stick with our plan.”

Think first, decide second

Sit and think about suggestions before making a decision. Is it a good idea? Or not? And can you see that decision through?

Now that you have some more ideas around how flexibility is linked to your EQ, where are you on the continuum?

Think about something that happened today where your flexibility – or lack of flexibility – showed up.  Is this how you want it to show up as a leader? If not, contact us for information on individual coaching. We’ll assess your flexibility and identify specific strategies to move your flexibility to the middle ground.

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