Will You Do Whatever It Takes?

March 9th, 2010   •   no comments   

adversity
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Challenges. Problems. Uncertainties. Obstacles. Stress.

These words form the lexicon of modern life, where resources – both financial and natural – are increasing being depleted while the demands of work, school and life put a severe drain on our beings. 

We don’t need any reminding to know that we are all damaging our planet at an alarming rate.

Attending to customer needs are also increasingly difficult as a growingly demanding and discerning population requests for more bang for the buck.

The office is also no longer a haven for lifelong employment. To stay nimble, flexible and focused, organisations are downsizing, rightsizing, and outsourcing in their bid to become cheaper, more cost effective and efficient.

Executives and managers have to constantly pick up new skills, multi-task, and juggle increasing responsibilities.

Importance of Resilience

How does one stay afloat in the sea of change filled with increasingly tempestuous and tsunami-sized waves?

Enter resilience.

In the 2010s, resilience, grit and perseverance will take on greater prominence as the world becomes ever more uncertain. Fortunately, these are timeless qualities that have stuck around with us for the longest time.

Our ancestors in Singapore have lots of it.

We have all heard how Singapore as a nation and an economy was conceived out of a little island of less than 700 sq km in area. We have all been regaled by the tales of how our pioneer leaders carved out a modern industrial park in Jurong out of a swampland.

We have also been cheered by how sheer determination, hard work, and a never-say-die attitude have led to our current status as a first-world city that is comparable to most modern ones across the globe.

How then does one increase one’s resilience?

Managing Adversity Quotient (AQ)

A way to look at this is to work on the four variables of one’s Adversity Quotient (AQ) by Dr Paul Stoltz, which is a measure of how you respond to adversity (change and challenges).

This can summarised by the CORE Acronym, ie:

  1. Control: The extent to which someone perceives they can influence whatever happens next.
  2. Ownership: The likelihood that someone will actually do anything to improve the situation, regardless of their formal responsibilities.
  3. Reach: The extent to which someone perceives an adversity will “reach into” and affect other aspects of the situation or beyond.
  4. Endurance: The length of time the individual perceives the situation / adversity will last, or endure.

To ride the wave and respond to adversities, it is recommended that one should do the following:

  1. Listen to your response to adversity.
  2. Explore all origins and your ownership responses.
  3. Analyze the evidence.
  4. Do something.

(source: Stitches)

Here are some additional useful tips on managing various forms of challenges:

Financial: In this economy, it is important for you to plan for your future and carefully manage and budget your money. Often, money becomes a big part of people’s stress because they fail to adequately prepare for a rainy day. The more planning you put into managing your finances, the better prepared you are for encountering a bump in the road.

Mental: Stress management is a really valuable habit to have. Being able to identify the types of stress and triggers allows you to better prepare yourself, and even those around you, so that you can maintain your productivity not just at work, but at home.

Emotional: Sometimes just taking a break from it all is necessary for your sanity. … Turn your cell phone off for a few hours, don’t check your email if at all possible, go outside, go swimming, eat something grilled – you get the idea.

Physical: Stress and turmoil can exert a physical toll on you. If you feel achy or seem to be getting headaches often, try adding some exercise into your day. …the sunshine will do you some good. If you really feel ill, you should talk with your doctor about stress management and possible techniques – like meditation – to help you get through those rough patches.

(source: IT Freedom)

Do you have any tips on how one can manage adversity at work, in school or at home? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

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