Given the accelerating pace of change and uncertainty, I believe that taking an Open Stance is our best way to be resilient and thrive. Rather than reacting to change and new developments, we need to be aware and prepared to respond. We need to be open to learn and to change course when necessary.
Research by McKinsey shows that adaptability is the critical success factor during periods of transformation and systematic change. When we take an Open Stance, we are positioned to learn and to be aware of opportunities.
Of course, our natural response to so much change is to be fearful, to contract and resort to old habitual patterns that may no longer serve us. When we are closed, our amygdala is activated and we are less positioned to learn new behaviors. When we make the intention of taking an Open Stance, we can engage in practices to build the mental muscle of shifting to being open and embracing possibilities. This is one of the most important skills needed these days for leaders and those who want to positively influence others.
Studies have correlated adaptability with higher levels of learning ability, greater performance, confidence, and creativity. Being open also enhances well-being, connection, and overall satisfaction.
There are many practices that contribute to cultivating an Open Stance to ensure adaptability. A simple one is to build the habit of feeling your feet on the ground as you walk from one place to another and to regularly check-in, take a breath and be present.
Recall your intention to be open. Commit to your wellbeing and take care of yourself.