Resilience: 2-Adaptability 

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Resilience: 2-Adaptability

Lesson Title: 

  • Embracing Adaptability for Resilient Growth

Vocabulary Word:

  • Adaptability – The ability to adjust and thrive in changing circumstances or environments.

Lesson Content:

A person in prison must learn to adapt. By adapting, a person develops skills that will translate into employment prospects upon release. Those who work through Prison Professors courses know I never ask anyone to pursue a course of action that would not lead to success upon release. 

In prison, I had to learn how to think differently. 

Regardless of what others did, I had to adapt. By learning to adapt, I grew stronger. That skill led to income opportunities as soon as I transitioned into society after decades inside.

Anyone who learns to adapt advances a path to personal growth and resilience. Adaptability proves especially helpful during challenging times, such as imprisonment. 

Adaptability involves:

  1. Being open to change, 
  2. Showing a willingness to adjust our mindset and behaviors, and
  3. Finding innovative solutions in the face of adversity. 

When we adapt, we empower ourselves to navigate difficult circumstances. Such skills make us more resilient.

Understanding the concept of adaptability is essential for personal development:

  1. Embracing Change:
    Adaptability starts with recognizing that change is inevitable. We must willingly embrace this concept. It requires us to let go of rigid thinking patterns and be willing to explore new perspectives and approaches.
  2. Flexibility in Mindset:
    An adaptable mindset allows us to approach challenges with curiosity and a willingness to learn. It means being open to feedback, receptive to different viewpoints, and willing to adjust our beliefs and behaviors based on new information.
  3. Problem-Solving and Creativity:
    Adaptability involves developing problem-solving skills and creative thinking. When faced with obstacles or unexpected situations, adaptable individuals can think critically, explore alternative solutions, and find innovative ways to overcome challenges.
  4. Resilience in the Face of Adversity:
    Adaptability and resilience go hand in hand. Adaptability allows us to bounce back from setbacks and find new paths. Anyone in prison needs this skill. Maintain a positive outlook, stay focused on goals, and develop the strength to persevere even under challenging circumstances.
  5. Embracing Opportunities:
    Adaptability also means recognizing and seizing opportunities for growth and development. Being adaptable allows us to take advantage of new experiences, learn new skills, and broaden our horizons.

Consider enrolling in the new Preparing for Success after Prison course. It has the Sentry code: PSAP. Participants may qualify for First Step Act credits. Check with your Reentry Coordinator or Supervisor of Education.

Don’t wait for the system to change your life. Start sowing seeds today to prepare for your success in the days, weeks, months, and years ahead. We cannot allow external circumstances to influence our prospects for success.

Questions and Activities: Answer as you deem appropriate

  • How do you understand the concept of adaptability?
  • Why is adaptability important for personal development, particularly during imprisonment?
  • Share an example of a time when you had to demonstrate adaptability while facing a challenging situation in prison. How did it contribute to your personal growth?
  • How can embracing adaptability help you prepare for a successful life after release?
  • What strategies can you employ to cultivate adaptability and resilience during your time in prison?


  • Reflect on a recent situation where you had to adapt to a change or challenge. Describe how you initially responded to the situation and the steps you took to adjust and find a solution. What did you learn from this experience?
  • Identify one area in your life where you can practice adaptability more effectively. Write down specific actions you can take to develop your adaptability skills in that area.
  • Remember, adaptability is a valuable skill that allows us to navigate life’s challenges with resilience and creativity. By embracing adaptability in your personal development journey, you equip yourself with the tools to thrive and grow, both during and after your time in prison.

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