Life – How Well Do You Adapt?

Recently, many of us all throughout the United States have had to drive in all kinds of weather.  We have had large snow storms in many places and heavy rain in others.  Weather affects our commute just about anywhere we live.

If it was not weather affecting us, it would be something else.  When you hop in the car and head out to work, to family, or to all the things you drive to each day, you can expect there will be something to create a delay, a detour, and a diversion.  It is just the way of the road.

So, why do we not adjust when we know this is the case?  How come so many of us expect to always drive the same speed and get to the same places in the same amount of time when that is not always going to be a reality?  I know we cannot control all things. Emergencies or accidents happen, but what about when we could make a change?

Living in an area where there can be heavy snow, I am constantly amazed at the people who drive the same way they always drive, at their usual high speed, and leaving at their normal time.

In sum, people who normally have a 30 minute commute on a dry, sunny morning with the cruise set at 7 miles over the speed limit expect to be able to do the same when roads have 2 feet of snow, are ice packed, and there is a dense fog.

These are the same people who seem to be the most irritated, angry, and frustrated.  I cannot verify it, but these seem to be those folks found to be most filled with road-rage.  These are the first to tailgate those who are being careful and who are adjusting.  These drivers seem to be the first to flip the bird when they race past you.

It is not uncommon for careful drivers to say we are more afraid of other drivers than we are of the conditions on the road.  I am amazed at this.  What are some of us missing when we rush out the door each day without adapting and adjusting to expected delays?

Why does every radio and TV station I know of have traffic reports?  Is it so we can ignore the message and continue to drive our usual way?  I think not.

What I believe may be missing is an understanding of the importance of being flexible and adaptable.

We live in a fast-paced and ever-changing world.  In so many ways, today is just a warm-up for tomorrow.  It has been said there are three kinds of people: “Those who wait for things to happen, those who make things happen, and those who wonder what happened!”

With how fast things change in this world of ours, we better make sure we are keeping up.  And this most definitely does not mean speed up!  We must get better at seeing what is coming and adjust as quickly as possible.

We no longer live in a world that will wait for us or hold our hands.  In the work world alone, adaptability is coming to be one of the most sought after traits.  In one study, 91% of HR directors said adaptability was soon going to be key in hiring!  This seems to be key everywhere.  We are going to have to show that we can change and adjust—and more than just on the road!



Jim R. Jacobs
Jim R. Jacobs
Jim R Jacobs is a brave creator who strives to do mighty things! Jim is a Certified Daring Way Facilitator helping others to live more brave and authentic lives! He is the author of Driving Lessons For Life: Thoughts on Navigating Your Road to Personal Growth. Jim speaks professionally, and coaches others to success and living with integrity. He is a counselor, educator, innovator, father, and friend. Please check out Jim R. Jacobs and Driving Lessons For Life and find Jim on social media! Let's connect and dare mighty things!

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  1. And here I thought I was the only person aware of this weather related driving phenom. Far too often I find my self-directed conversation sounding something like this, “These tailgaters have three choices: they can get up earlier, go around me, or ride it out”. That’s my way of controlling what I can, and adapting to what could otherwise be a nerve wracking experience, if I let it. There’s an old Chinese proverb that’s applicable to those who choose not to (or can not) adapt when required…”The tree that does not bend in the wind will break” (or wind up with his car wrapped around a tree).

  2. The most adaptable people I’ve work with did their best to keep their piles of work down to manageable levels. In doing so it gave them time to plan, internalize, and act accordingly. Those I worked with that couldn’t stop their piles of work from piling up were much more rigid in their thinking; more rigid because they didn’t have the time to really think about what they’re really doing.