80 ‘How to Adapt’ Quotes That Can Help You Through Tough Times

These ‘how to adapt’ quotes will offer some hope if you are struggling and need a little extra help right now.

The ability to adapt is one of the most important traits you can have as a human being.

Change is constant, and there will be many things in your life that you cannot control.

One of the most famous quotes about adapting is “adapt or die” by Charles Darwin.

We know he also said that only the strong survive.

Adapting can require a massive amount of strength, so it doesn’t surprise me that these two quotes came from the same person.

It is much easier to adapt to situations that only cause a mild level of discomfort.

Unfortunately, life often throws us things that are incredibly painful.

Such things offer us no other option than to adapt if we are going to be able to live with the pain.

Check out our most popular quote article, a list of short inspirational quotes for daily inspiration. 

Explore our complete collection of motivational quotes here.

Wise and intelligent adaptation quotes

1. “Intelligence is the ability to adapt to change.” Stephen Hawking

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

3. “Adaptability to change is itself a hallmark of successful education.” — Peter Hilton

4. “As human beings, we do change, grow, adapt, perhaps even learn and become wiser.” ― Wendy Carlos

5. “The wise adapt themselves to circumstances, as water molds itself to the pitcher.” ―  Chinese Proverb

6. “We have to be able to adapt to a new situation. It’s another form of the definition of intelligent behavior.” ― Hasso Plattner

7. “It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.” ― Leon C. Megginson

8. “A reason we are so-so scientists is that our brains were shaped for fitness, not for truth. Sometimes truth is adaptive, but sometimes it is not.” ― Steven Pinker

9. “Reasonable men adapt to the world around them; unreasonable men make the world adapt to them. The world is changed by unreasonable men.” ― Edwin Louis Cole

10. “All we have is the knowledge passed on to us by our elders, experiences we inculcate, and hardly negate. But to bridge the generation gap, one needs to adapt to the new while retaining the goodness of the old.” ― Sonali Bendre

Adapt quotes about how we see the elements of nature

11. “Learn to surf whatever life throws at you.” ― Gustavo Razzetti

12. “Adapt or perish, now as ever, is Nature’s inexcusable imperative.” ― H. G. Wells

13. “It is not a failure to readjust my sails to fit the waters I find myself in.” ― Mackenzi Lee

14. “It’s always difficult when you’re working with Mother Nature because you need to adapt to that.” ― Pilou Asbaek

15. “Life happens how it happens, and you either move with the maelstrom or die wallowing about the change in the winds.” ― Cora Carmack

16. “The oak is the strongest tree in the forest, but the willow bends and adapts. When the fires and storms hit, it is the willow that survives.” ― Kara Barbieri

17. “Man is a product of nature, a part of the Universe. The Universe is operated under exact natural laws. Man is a product of millions of years of evolution. He adapts himself to the laws of nature or he perishes.” ― James Hervey Johnson

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18. “To survive and even thrive in a changing world, nature offers another great lesson: the survivors are those who at the least adapt to change, or even better learn to benefit from change and grow intellectually and personally. That means careful listening and constant learning.” ― Frances Arnold

If you’re enjoying these quotes, make sure to read our collection of listening quotes that express the importance of listening.

Adapt quotes on why we should change

19. “Change brings faster results than chance.” ― Amit Kalantri

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

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

22. “Change. Adapt. Bend so as not to be broken. Let opportunity guide your actions.” ― Wayne Gerard Trotman

23. “Be flexible enough to change in the face of novelty and strong enough to face adversity.” ― Shivashanmugam

24. “Enjoying success requires the ability to adapt. Only by being open to change will you have a true opportunity to get the most from your talent.” ― Nolan Ryan

25. “Only those who are able to adapt to changing scenarios will continue to survive and prosper. Success is directly proportional to the degree of positive adaptation to change.” ― Vishwas Chavan

26. “We are a party of innovation. We do not reject our traditions, but we are willing to adapt to changing circumstances when change we must. We are willing to suffer the discomfort of change in order to achieve a better future.” Barbara Jordan

Adapt quotes about life

27. “Life persists if it can respond and adapt to its environment.” ― Abhijit Naskar

28. “People no longer have one job for life, so it is right that younger generations adapt.” ― Esther McVey

29. “Life does more than adapt to the Earth. It changes the Earth to its own purposes.” ― James Lovelock

30. “When one faces pain on a daily basis, one either learns to live with it or let it consume him.” ― Jina S. Bazzar

31. “To live is to exist within the boundaries of what is permissible and what is not. Adaptation to this is called life.” ― Elmar Hussein

32. “Things you don’t expect, come up, and you have to adapt. You can’t let it throw you off. You have to cope. Those are all really valuable skills in life and racing.” ― Mikaela Shiffrin

33. “As the world we live in is so unpredictable, the ability to learn and to adapt to change is imperative, alongside creativity, problem-solving, and communication skills.” ― Alain Dehaze

34. “I think self-love isn’t some destination you get to and you are then incapable of feeling those feelings, but a journey in which you adapt your experiences to make for a happier life.” ― Paloma Elsesser

35. “Life is neither static nor unchanging. With no individuality, there can be no change, no adaptation and, in an inherently changing world, any species unable to adapt is also doomed.” ― Jean M. Auel

36. “In our personal and professional lives, we are constantly hit with one adversity after the other, most of which we have no control over. But the four things we have total control over is how we react, how we adapt, how we breathe, and how we take action.” ― Diamond Dallas Page

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Adapt quotes to inspire you

37. “Adapt yourself to the needs of the people.” ― Sunday Adelaja

38. “Be flexible and adapt easily to new things.” ― Sunday Adelaja

39. “A true champion can adapt to anything.” Floyd Mayweather, Jr.

40. “Resistance and adaptation bring evolution.” ― Aniekee Tochukwu Ezekiel

41. “Every success story is a tale of constant adaption, revision, and change.” — Richard Branson

42. “Adaptability is not imitation. It means power of resistance and assimilation.” Mahatma Gandhi

43. “Yoga is the best way to learn to adapt and adjust to the changing environments.” ― Amit Ray

44. “Stay committed to your decisions, but stay flexible in your approach. It’s the end you’re after.” — Anthony Robbins

45. “Always be true to you. But learn how to adapt, too. That’s something I wish I did when I was younger.” ― Denzel Curry

46. “Your ability to adapt to failure, and navigate your way out of it, absolutely 100 percent makes you who you are.” ― Viola Davis

47. “Adapt to yourself, bro. What I wanna say is don’t let nobody tell you that you should stay in your lane, bro.” ― Ski Mask the Slump God

48. “All of us need to begin to think in terms of our own inner strengths, our resilience, and resourcefulness, our capacity to adapt, and to rely upon ourselves and our families.” ― Steven Pressfield

49. “If you’re not stubborn, you’ll give up on experiments too soon. And if you’re not flexible, you’ll pound your head against the wall and you won’t see a different solution to a problem you’re trying to solve.” ― Jeff Bezos

50. “The environment around us is constantly changing, including innovations, friends, employment and moving to a different location; those who accept and excel at adaptation have smoother transitions, while others struggle.” ― R.J. Intindola

If you’re enjoying these quotes, you’ll love our collection of resilience quotes to inspire your next comeback.

Other inspirational adapt quotes

51. “Take in every detail of your environment and adapt.” Serenity

52. “Evolution is more about adaptivity than adaptability.” Raheel Farooq

53. “Life is ever changing. We can always adapt to the new changes.” Lailah Gifty Akita

54. “It is very undesirable to trigger adaptation processes in the human body.” Steven Magee

55. “Perhaps it is our imperfections that make us so perfect for one another.” Douglas McGrath

56. “People seem to get used to anything, and it is a short step from adaptation to attachment.” Lionel Shriver

57. “The mind is not designed to grasp the laws of probability, even though the laws rule the universe.” Steven Pinker

58. “Mass movements are a function of adaptation. Its pulse is change. A movement without mass is a cult. And it is in cults that stupid tyrants hold sway.” Psyche Roxas-Mendoza

59. “Being able to shift in light of new information and in light of new opportunities is a skill. Practicing will make you a more confident leader of change, now and in the future.” Stewart D. Friedman

60. “The secrets of evolution are death and time—the deaths of enormous numbers of lifeforms that were imperfectly adapted to the environment; and time for a long succession of small mutations.” Carl Sagan

Accept and adapt quotes to inspire how you respond to change

61.  “The world is constantly changing and smart people change with it.” Steven Magee

62. “You cannot change the weather, so learn to sail in every weather.” Debasish Mridha

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63. “We assimilate a little this way, and a little that way. Life is only mutation.” Gretel Ehrlich

64. “The change will happen in all circumstances, either with us or without us.” ― Sukant Ratnakar

65. “It’s too late to be studying Hebrew; it’s more important to understand even the slang of today.” Henry David Thoreau

66. “Rather than fight change, a more sensible approach is to learn to live with it. Or to make a living from it.” Gerald M. Weinberg

67. “Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.” John F. Kennedy

68. “In the end, it is important to remember that we cannot become what we need to be by remaining what we are.” Max De Pree

69. “Change is the only constant in life. Ones ability to adapt to those changes will determine your success in life.” Benjamin Franklin

70. “There is only one way to survive and thrive when faced with circumstances out of our control and for which we are unprepared: ADAPT.” Charles F Glassman

How to adapt quotes to inspire growth in life

71. “Adaptability is key.” Marc Andreessen

72. “We learn flexibility and adaptability.” John Roper

73. “Action and adaptability create opportunity.” Garrison Wynn

74. “Adaptability is the simple secret of survival.” Jessica Hagedorn

75. “Adaptability enforces creativity, and creativity is adaptability.” ― Pearl Zhu

76. “When we allow ourselves to adapt to different situations, life is easier.” Catherine Pulsifer

77. “Adaptability is about the powerful difference between adapting to cope and adapting to win.” ― Max McKeown

78. “All fixed set patterns are incapable of adaptability or pliability. The truth is outside of all fixed patterns.” ―Bruce Lee

79. “You can’t build an adaptable organization without adaptable people and individuals change only when they have to, or when they want to.” Gary Hamel

80. “And the most successful people are those who accept, and adapt to constant change. This adaptability requires a degree of flexibility and humility most people can’t manage.” Paul Lutus

What did you learn from these adapt quotes?

How resilient are you?

I think you are stronger and more resilient than you give yourself credit for.

There are things you can do to improve your level of resilience and your ability to adapt if you feel like this is an area you want to improve.

Change your mindset.

While this is not easy, it is possible.

Do the things in life that give you meaning and purpose.

Don’t cling to anger and regret.

Letting those emotions go will serve you much better in the long run.

Try to look for the positive in whatever your situation is.

One final quote about adapting to remember is, “When one door closes, another one opens.”

It may not be obvious right away, but never fear that it’s there.

Search it out, and remember that our greatest moments often come from when we face the most adversity.

If you want more adaptability quotes, check out these coyote quotes about one of the most adaptable creatures.

What’s your biggest takeaway from these adapt quotes and sayings?

Do you have any other favorite quotes to add?

Let us know in the comment section below.

Danielle is the Managing Editor for EverydayPower.com. She has a Master's in Management and Leadership and is also a Life Coach. These skills, coupled with her background, both professional and personal, help her write on a variety of topics. This content is centered on team and self-development, trauma, motivation, and other inspirational messages. She lives in Montana with her husband and two children. When not writing she can found reading, cooking, and helping others overcome obstacles in their daily lives.