The only constant in life is change, so it’s wise to familiarize yourself with today’s terms: the verb adapt means “to adjust oneself to different conditions, environment, etc.” If you adapt easily to all circumstances, it means you are flexible and can modify your plans or expectations without difficulty. The verb acclimate means “to accustom or become accustomed to a new climate or environment.” When we acclimate to something (such as thin air at high elevations), we get used to it over time. The adjustment implied by this term is often a physiological one (your body will acclimate to the heat), though it’s also used to talk about the imperceptible ways in which one adjusts to a new lifestyle or culture.
Today’s featured words are more than enough. If you have an excess of something, you have an extreme amount or a superabundance of that thing: He had an excess of energy, so he went for a 10-mile run. This is a noun use of the word, but excess is also used as an adjective to mean “extra”: to shed excess weight. The noun plethora refers to an overabundance of something: The student was bombarded with a plethora of information from the admissions office after inquiring about the college. The surfeit implied by plethora is not as extreme as excess (note the distinction between a superabundance and an overabundance), which is perhaps why plethora is increasingly used to refer to a very large amount of something in a neutral or even favorable way; however, this usage is frowned on by some stylists.
Both flair and panache can be used to refer to a quality of distinctive stylishness that makes something interesting or attractive. It’s common to say that someone does something (dresses or cooks, for example) with flair or with panache, or even with flair and panache. And we’re often told what ingredient or item will add flair or panache (or both) to a room, an outfit, or a dish. These nouns are interchangeable to a point, but their differences should not be ignored, as often happens. Panache is a manner of doing something with flamboyant confidence, vigor, and energy, as well as style or skill. Panache also has a wider range of application than flair—someone can play a sport, direct films, or lead an organization with panache.