Evolution Festival 2011 - Evolution Weekender - Saturday

The history of evolution is littered with prominent examples of species adapting to their surroundings in order to survive.

As a species, humans have done pretty well in the overall adaptation stakes. Sadly, we’ve taken the process a step too far on occasion and found ways to adapt our environment to suit us, rather than changing the way we grow to suit our environment. This isn’t about that, though.

What it’s about is the essential ability for all of us to learn to adapt in order not to survive, but to thrive. There is little we can do about our survival adaptations – it can take millennia for us to change to overcome our surroundings or, say, develop immunity to certain diseases.

Thriving focuses on adapting to our surroundings and situations in order to make the most of what we’ve been given. Before my transplant, I had to adapt to cope with a life attached to oxygen and energy levels so low I had to consider every action of the day from making tea to going shopping.

Today, four weeks into my first full-time employed job for almost a decade, I have to adapt to early morning starts, long weeks and working in a large, open-plan office with a lot of noise and interruptions that I could more easily ignore working from home.

The key to adaptation is learning that there is something to which you need to adapt and then choosing how you’re going to deal with it.

I am, slowly but surely, starting to adapt to my new workspace and finding time in my day to still enjoy the creativity of writing and filmmaking. I don’t have the balance right yet, but I know that as I slowly adapt to my own new world order, I’ll get a far better grip on all the things I want in life.

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Photo: Matt Dinnery on Flickr.

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