I am sure you must be hearing the term anti-fragility for the first time.
Yet, the word in itself explains the very essence of its definition. Antifragility is a term first coined in Nicholas Taleb’s book, the Black Swan where he described the basic idea of where many human-made systems are fragile. To best explain it, here’s something that we all encounter once in a while.
Let’s assume that we start our day with something new such as meditation, exercise, writing or creating something new only to realize that we fail at it. And in response to our failure, we often feel despair settle in. We eventually fall apart and beat ourselves, or feel discouraged and give up.
Such behavior is a fragile non resilient approach towards achieving something that we sought out for.
Eventually when we try something a lot of times, we feel that something is wrong with ourselves. However, the fact of the matter is, there’s nothing wrong with us but the fragile approach of humans.
It’s why I am going to take time to explain how humans have an anti-fragility system built into them.
And let’s explore how we can train our antifragile systems to do better in life.
Learn From Failure by Performing Small Experiments
Breaking down tasks into smaller chunks can enable you to get over the big stressors before they take place. If you are new to something and you don’t know how to get along with it, it’s best that you break down your tasks into smaller chunks so they don’t lead you into a complete failure. When it comes to training your fragile system, start by doing experiments, holding small training sessions within your massive project & hold long sessions to get a good grip and command on the task to get better at it. Failing countless times in various phases and trying again to do better at it is relatively better than failing at the whole thing at once.
Adopt the Attitude of Embracing Uncertainty & Discomfort
Uncertainty can cause discomfort and stem in the dread of failing at important tasks greatly. If you don’t wish to feel uncertain or fail at the task that you’re performing, it’s best that you overcome your fear of failing and embrace uncertainty. It’s best that we push ourselves into the direction and perform better at our tasks with all the risks, failures and uncertainties involved. We might fail to achieve our goals & objectives initially. But with each time we practice, we can turn our problems into opportunity.
Perform Weekly Reviews to Learn How to Make Adjustments
When performing unachievable or undesirable tasks, weekly reviews are mandatory. Track how you progressed that particular day or what went well for you and what did not suit your likings. Only then you will be able to make adjustments, and learn great things, better things. By reviewing your tasks every week, you will be able to assemble a lot of potential information on how things worked and what steps you can take to make your task more effective and easy in the future. By taking a step by step approach, you will get a better grasp at achieving your goals and eventually turn impossible into possible.
Use Accountability & Support to Get Through
Find a person to report to about your tasks at the end of every day. It can be your manager or some colleague with whom you’re working alongside. In a way, you will always keep your feet in the fire and you won’t easily deviate from your objectives. Reporting can be demanding but at the same time, it can help us learn and overcome our mistakes and failures. You form an alliance with someone to keep a keen watchful eye and this can eventually provide you with a safety net to fall on rather than falling all the way to your despair and completely giving up on the task.
Cultivate an Attitude of Consistency and Eradicate Redundancies
When training your antifragile system, it’s best that you remove the elements that are redundant. By doing so, you can avoid getting yourself lost up in things that you are not supposed to do. Several tasks that you are performing are unimportant and when you give too much attention to non-worthy tasks you run on creative juice to perform tasks which are essential. As a result, you end up creating an attitude of inconsistency. And you often fall short on achieving your goals & objectives. Therefore, it is best that you opt-in for developing an attitude that helps you stay consistent in the long run.
Remove Elements Which Makes You Fragile
Some of the things that I can think of that can make you fragile are smoking and eating unhealthy. And when we talk about mental aptitude, the things that make us fragile are complaints and resentments. When we develop a bad habit of negative thinking, it can hurt our ways of progressing. Although, we may not be able to avoid negative thoughts completely but we can choose to act accordingly. We can choose to retaliate and give up by letting that negativing thinking settle in or we can simply reduce their occurrences by trying to think positive and give up on negative thoughts. It may not be easy, but it isn’t something that is unachievable.
See the Opportunity in Everything
The only way you can overcome your antifragile system is by seeing the opportunity that will make you mentally adapt. Don’t beat yourself up if you can’t get through a particular phase. Give yourself time and relax. See the opportunity in your task by observing what potential it holds. Every non-possible phase has a certainly plausible edge to it. All you have to do is find that edge and make it work in your favor. So when you see an opportunity in your phase of work, don’t let it slip but make the best of it.
So there you go, here’s just about everything you need to do to make your antifragile system strong.