Rigid? Here’s how to become more flexible

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Rigid? Here’s how to become more flexible

Ever wish you could break out of your established patterns and ways of being? The truth is that most of us are more comfortable acting in familiar ways and in typical situations. What do you do when those comfy habits aren’t working anymore? How do you overcome the fear and uncertainty that crop up when you break away from your routine behaviors?

  1. Center on your core values as a means of staying grounded.
  2. Expand your point of view by reading new authors, looking for examples outside and within your industry, and deeply listening to those around you who bring new ideas.
  3. Keep your stress levels calibrated. Some stress creates mental sharpness. Extreme stress means you’ll eventually shut down. Practice self-care to boost resilience. 
  4. Recruit an accountability buddy. Share your focus on new thinking and behavior with someone you trust and who is in a position to give you consistent feedback. Set up a regular time to get input on how you’re doing.

Don’t confuse flexibility with being a pushover or wishy washy. As the Chinese philosopher Laozi said, “Water is fluid, soft, and yielding. But water will wear away rock, which is rigid and cannot yield. As a rule, whatever is fluid, soft, and yielding will overcome whatever is rigid and hard. This is another paradox: what is soft is strong.”

How are you staying flexible in your thinking and actions? Comment below or message us.


Photo by Lucas George Wendt on Unsplash

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Comments (2)

  1. Thank you for this blog. As I age, I am learning to be more flexible. I do find that staying curious and learning new things are the best way for me to lean into flexibility. In these times, I am finding that I, along with many people in my life, have an ongoing level of stress that is wearing away at our ability to be happy, productive and energetic. I am definitely looking into the ‘stress diary’ listed in the Mind Tools article on managing stress, as I am finding that I do not even realize what my stressors are!

    1. Erin, thanks for this. I too find that I am not aware of stressors, or their effect on me. I like to think I’m cool and calm regardless, but getting more in touch with my body’s responses has shown me otherwise! Best wishes to you!

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