The Strategist

Why you need mental flexibility

02/17/2017 - 15:47

When we are overtaken by a problem, our brain pushes the panic button. Yet, if you develop flexibility of thought, you will be easy-going about any challenge. Here are things worth to remember.

Everyone comes to a standstill sometimes.

Stagnant situations are inevitable. No matter how conscious you behave or how well you negotiate - you will always be faced with difficult circumstances and though relationships. We all have our perception gaps. No matter how flexible is your mind and how developed are your communication skills, you will still a hard nut to crack. Such is life.

Your stagnant situation is determined by your personality.

We all have different strengths and weaknesses, advantages and disadvantages. Therefore, you may regard any situation as complicated though others have no problem in dealing with them. Do not blame yourself, but instead try to develop appropriate mental and emotional "muscles".

It can be hard to understand what is really wrong.

You cannot change anything in a stagnant situation. Find your way out of it is like to solve an equation.

Mathematical problems are all clear. Each character has a certain value, all the information given in statement of problem, and you know what actions you need to take. On the other hand, a stagnant situation takes a lot of time and effort just to find out what is the problem itself. We'll have to unravel the tangle first, consider the situation from different angles, identify main external factors and so on.

A problem doesn’t necessarily have a clear and objectively correct solution.

There is no uniform "correct" way to deal with a situation. Do not be discouraged if you realize that you need quite some time to find its solution.

Flexible mind helps find new ways.

If you lose your balance, flexibility of thinking will help you find it again. You will find new strength to correct the problem situation when you slow things down and use mental flexibility. One advantage of viewing a situation from different, perhaps conflicting positions that it allows detecting different solutions. A role-play, in turn, will help to clarify the question of which path you should choose.

The solution should fit your personal characteristics.

After you switch on mental flexibility and choose a further course of action, you will not only have to implement the solution in practice, but also keep your character. You can draw strength from support and advice of other people, but your words and actions must come from within if you want to succeed.

There’s always a way out.

We are faced with difficulties, and it is inevitable. However, we do not have to endure a situation in which we do not feel comfortable. Flexible thinking lets you establish a constructive dialogue, accept the status quo, or decide that is the best way to bail out of the difficulties.

Skills come with experience.

Mental flexibility can be very helpful as sometimes it allows you to completely avoid stagnation. If you still find some situations difficult, work hard on them and constantly train your flexibility of thinking. This reduces time spent in a stagnant situation and help you move in the right direction.
based on ‘I Hear You: Repair Communication Breakdowns, Negotiate Successfully, and Build Consensus... in Three Simple Steps’ by Donny Ebenstein