Adapt

“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change. “

~ Charles Darwin
Stencil art by KrieBeL

More on adaptation:

“The measure of intelligence is the ability to change.”
~ Albert Einstein

“Those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.”
~ George Bernard Shaw

“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you always got.”
~ James P. Lewis

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Adapt     /əˈdapt/     verb

1- make (something) suitable for a new use or purpose; modify. “hospitals have had to be adapted for modern medical practice”

2- become adjusted to new conditions. “a large organization can be slow to adapt to change”

3- alter (a text) to make it suitable for filming, broadcasting, or the stage. “the miniseries was adapted from Wouk’s novel”

Think

“We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts we make the world.”

The Buddha
The Thinker by Auguste Rodin, 1903

More about thought:

“We are addicted to our thoughts. We cannot change anything if we cannot change our thinking.”
~ Santos Kalwar, Quote Me Everyday

The soul becomes dyed with the color of its thoughts.”
~ Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

“Closed in a room, my imagination becomes the universe, and the rest of the world is missing out.”
~ Criss Jami, Diotima, Battery, Electric Personality

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Think     /THiNGk/

verb
1 – have a particular opinion, belief, or idea about someone or something. “she thought that nothing would be the same again”
2 – direct one’s mind toward someone or something; use one’s mind actively to form connected ideas. “he was thinking about Colin”

noun (informal)
an act of thinking. “I went for a walk to have a think”

Believe

“The ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world are the ones who do.”

~ John McAfee
Self-portrait as a Painter by Vincent van Gogh

More on Belief:

“Believe you can and you’re halfway there.”
~ Theodore Roosevelt

“When someone shows you who they are, believe them.”
~ Maya Angelou

“I was taught that to create anything you had to believe in failure, simply because you had to be prepared to go through an idea without any fear. Failure, you learned, as I did in art school, to be a wonderful thing. It allowed you to get up in the morning and take the pillow off your head.”
~ Malcolm Mclaren

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Believe     /bəˈlēv/     verb
1) accept (something) as true; feel sure of the truth of. “the superintendent believed Lancaster’s story”
2) hold (something) as an opinion; think or suppose. “I believe we’ve already met”)

Focus

“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.”

~ Socrates
Glass II; oil on canvas by Philip Barlow

More on Focus:

“Lack of direction, not lack of time, is the problem. We all have twenty-four hour days.”
~ Zig Ziglar

“It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light.”
~ Aristotle Onassis

“You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. Once you get there, you can move mountains.”
~ Steve Jobs

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Focus     /ˈfōkəs/

noun
1) the center of interest or activity. “this generation has made the environment a focus of attention”
2) the state or quality of having or producing clear visual definition. “his face is rather out of focus”

verb
1) (of a person or their eyes) adapt to the prevailing level of light and become able to see clearly. “try to focus on a stationary object”
2) pay particular attention to. “the study will focus on a number of areas in Wales”

Find Your Niche

“Choose your corner, pick away at it carefully, intensely and to the best of your ability and that way you might change the world.” 

~ Charles Eames
Mihrab (Prayer Niche); Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

More on finding your niche:

“He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how.” ~ Nietzsche

“I don’t believe in this ‘gifted few’ concept; just in people doing things they are really interested in doing. They have a way of getting good at whatever it is.” ~ Charles Eames

“Whether you try too hard to fit in or you try too hard to stand out, it is of equal consequence: you exhaust your significance.”  ~ Criss Jami, Healology

“If everybody is doing it one way, there’s a good chance you can find your niche by going exactly in the opposite direction.” ~ Sam Walton

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Niche     /niCH,nēSH/ 

noun
1. a shallow recess, especially one in a wall to display a statue or other ornament.
2. a comfortable or suitable position in life or employment. “he is now a partner at a leading law firm and feels he has found his niche”

adjective
denoting or relating to products, services, or interests that appeal to a small, specialized section of the population. “other companies in this space had to adapt to being niche players”

verb
place or position (something) in a niche.

Speak Up

“You’ve really got to appreciate an artist that’s really outspoken and feels like his music can change the world.”

~ Rakim
Guernica, Pablo Picasso’s statement about the tragedies of war

More on speaking up:

“What you fill your mind with is eventually translated into the words you speak, and then your words create action.” ~ Paul J. Meyer

“I think it is important to speak your mind. Tolerance of ignorance sends the wrong message to kids.” ~ Marley Dias

“Fight for what you believe in, speak your mind, and don’t be afraid.” ~ Ally Brooke

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Outspoken     /out’spōken/     adjective
frank in stating one’s opinions, especially if they are critical or controversial. “he has been outspoken in his criticism”

Learn

“Let us remember: One book, one pen, one child, and one teacher can change the world.”

~ Malala Yousafzai
Illustration from the sketchbooks of Leonardo da Vinci

More about learning:

“We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.” ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

“The noblest pleasure is the joy of understanding. ~ Leonardo da Vinci

“There is no end to education. It is not that you read a book, pass an examination, and finish with education. The whole of life, from the moment you are born to the moment you die, is a process of learning.” ~ Jiddu Krishnamurti

You cannot open a book without learning something.” ~ Confucius

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Learn     /lern/     Verb

  1. gain or acquire knowledge of or skill in (something) by study, experience or being taught. “they’d started learning French”
    – commit to memory “I’d learned too many grim poems in school”
    – become aware of (something) by information or from observation. “I learned that they had eaten already”
  1. (archaic, informal)
    teach (someone). “That’ll learn you,” he chuckled”

Be Passionate

“The greatest danger to our future is apathy.”

~ Jane Goodall
The Red Vineyards at Arles by Vincent van Gogh, November 1888; Getty Images

More on passion:

“There is no passion to be found playing small–in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.”
~ Nelson Mandela

“Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you.”
~ Oprah Winfrey

“If passion drives you, let reason hold the reins.”
~ Benjamin Franklin

“I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.”
~ Albert Einstein

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Passion     /‘paSHen/     noun
strong and barely controllable emotion “a man of impetuous passion”

Apathy     /‘apeTHē/     noun
lack of interest, enthusiasm, or concern “widespread apathy among students”

Don’t Be Afraid

“Fear defeats more people than any other one thing in the world.”

~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
The Scream by Edvard Munch

More about fear:

“I have learned over the years that when one’s mind is made up, this diminishes fear; knowing what must be done does away with fear.” ~ Rosa Parks

“What is a fear of living? It’s being preeminently afraid of dying. It is not doing what you came here to do, out of timidity and spinelessness. The antidote is to take full responsibility for yourself – for the time you take up and the space you occupy. If you don’t know what you’re here to do, then just do some good.” ~ Maya Angelou

“It is the strange fate of man, that even in the greatest of evils the fear of the worst continues to haunt him.” ~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

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Fear     /‘fir/ 
noun – An unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat. ‘he is prey to irrational fears”
verb – Be afraid of (someone or something) as likely to be dangerous, painful, or threatening. “farmers fear that they will lose business” 

Start Small

“As an intern for Vice President Walter Mondale, I arrived the first day ready to write policy memos and change the world… but my assignment was doing an inventory of the furniture.”

~ Amy Klobuchar
Photo by Jonathan Djuwandi


More on starting small:

“Have a bias toward action – let’s see something happen now. You can break that big plan into small steps and take the first step right away.” ~ Indira Gandhi

“The man who removes a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.” ~ Chinese Proverb

“Do small things with great love.” ~ Mother Teresa

“I long to accomplish a great and noble task; but it is my chief duty to accomplish small tasks as if they were great and noble.” ~ Helen Keller