The Ability To Adapt And Change

 How many counselors does it take to change a light bulb?                                                                             It only takes one, but the light bulb has to want to change.

 Many years ago I used the above light bulb joke in my speeches and essays. It makes the point that change comes from within. But most people want someone else to change. Change is good; you go first, Dilbert. Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself, Leo Tolstoy.We don’t like change because change is threatening to the status quo. Joel Barker called the inability to shift one’s point of view paradigm paralysis. It became one of my “four future neuroses” in 1993*. And the future skill was flexpertize, the ability to continually adapt, innovate, and change, a term coined by Lewis Perelman. This blog is a reminder of the importance of the ability and willingness(maybe even the need) to be flexible.

 Change can happen by you; but change can also happen to you.You can’t always control, or even predict, the change that happens to you. But you can control the change of view that happens by you — you can change your mind, you can change the way you see things, you can adapt, innovate, change — if you want to.

One of my decision strategies has been: “Become as capable of change as the environment.” We live in a world of “white water change”, where change is more rapid, more complex, and more unpredictable than ever. If everything around us is changing, being flexible will be important. Flexpertize makes you open-minded. Or open-mindedness makes you flexible.

Carol Dweck, in her book, Mindset, 2006, says her research shows people have two mindsets about  self-theories: a fixed (unchangeable) mindset and a growth (malleable) mindset. Flexpertize requires a malleable mindset. To be inflexible is to be incapable of being changed; unalterable. The future neurosis of paradigm paralysis restricts flexibility because it makes us incapable of seeing that things are no longer the way they used to be. Flexpertize helps you get off the paradigm.

Change and creativity are two sides of the same coin. Change is one of the biggest causes of creativity and creativity causes change. Learning involves change. Do you see change as something to avoid, to deny, to control, or to respect and make use of?

 Remember that the only constant in life is change,Buddha.

 The measure of intelligence is the ability to change, Albert Einstein.



*Future Sense. THE FUTURIST, Sept.-Oct. 1993

This entry was posted in Words to Live By. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to “FLEXPERTIZE”

  1. Eugene Unger says:

    In what areas are we

    Sent from my iPad Resistant to change? >

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.