The Key to Long-Term Survival
Few would know about the Wood Frog that lives in Alaska. Or that this incredible animal has learned how to stop their heart from beating when temperatures reach 60 below. They do this by storing up high levels of glucose, and then come spring, these amazing frogs thaw out and "come back to life".
Nature already knows what we must learn. To survive, to thrive, we must learn to adapt. Nothing makes me crazier than when I hear someone tell me "We've always done it like this". And I get it. Change is hard. It's uncomfortable. It's even scary. But, it's necessary.
For many years things changed gradually for humans. Then we switched over to the fast lane. The internet happened. Cell phones appeared. 9/11 shifted life as we knew it. Climate change arrived--big time. Gig jobs erupted, so did student loans. People learned to work from home and kids did too. Diversity became a household name in companies, where the "me too" movement took down others.
I understand the lack of willingness to change. My husband listens to me complain about the tall sticks of what architects call "buildings" forever changing the iconic landscape of Manhattan. Yet, I know the same was said of the Guggenheim. I like speaking on the phone, but my kids would rather text. A colleague recently asked me what LMAO meant. Yes, the world is changing and so must we.
Young people take change with stride. Why shouldn't they? Everyday brings change - in how they look, how they think, and how they plan. The key to adapting is staying young at heart. Looking at the status quo and asking why. Challenging the norm for what can be better. Leaders must embrace change. Nothing taught us that better than the pandemic.
By adapting we will be better employers, employees, spouses, parents, children, friends, and colleagues. Which is why the next time we hear someone say "that's the way we've done it" or "we're used to doing it this way" or "we're afraid what might happen" we must raise the red flag and question what good can come by challenging the familiar. Like the Wood Frog, you might just find you have discovered a way to survive.