Resilience: Build skills to endure hardship. How is your level of resilience?

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Resilience is your ability to quickly bounce back from failure, adversity, rejection, criticism, tragedy, setbacks, stress, and more.”

So ask yourself, when something goes wrong, do you tend to bounce back or fall apart?

Resilience is what helps you harness an inner strength that helps you rebound from a setback or challenge. Challenges come in all shapes and sizes, especially right now with the COVID 19 epidemic affecting so many individual’s jobs and sources of income. Challenges could be an illness, a break up in a relationship, or a loved one’s death. How can you tell if you are lacking resilience? A few signs might be that you dwell on problems, you become overwhelmed, little things send your emotions spiraling.  You may feel victimized, or even turn to self-medicating like over-eating, or substance abuse as a way to escape or feel like you are in control and can cope.

Now resilience is not the “golden ticket” that will make your problems go away — but resilience can give you the ability to see past them, find those little moments in life that bring you joy, by giving you the stamina to better handle stress and become more significant as an influencer of people. If you are beginning to relate and aren’t as resilient as you’d like to be, keep reading because you can develop or improve on some skills to become more resilient.

Adapting to adversity

Remember that resilience is the ability to adapt to difficult situations. However, when stress, adversity, or trauma strikes, your reaction may still be fear, anger, grief, or pain, but with resilience, you are still able to keep functioning — both mentally and physically. A key point to remember is that resilience isn’t about putting up with something difficult, being stoic and trying to tough it out, or figuring it out how to hand something on your own. No, the key to being resilient is having the courage to reach out to others for understanding and support.

Resilience and wellness

Your ability for resilience can help to protect you from altering your state of wellness and falling into depression and anxiety. Resilience lifts the emotional energy that can help you manage your emotions when you begin to recall past traumas. The wonderful feature of being resilient is that it can help you create tranquility by improving your coping ability.

Tips to improve your resilience

If you’d like to become more resilient, then focus on the Seven Basic Needs and consider these tips:

  • Get connected. Associate with people who are positive and uplifting. Building relationships that are strong and positive with people whom you care about will provide you support and the feeling of acceptance when times are good or when they are bad. Here are a few ideas to establish other important connections:
    • volunteering
    • get to know your neighbors or work associates better
    • joining a faith or spiritual community.
  • Make every day meaningful and don’t forget to add a dose of fun.  Every day, do something that gives you a sense of accomplishment.
    • Setting daily goals brings a sense of purpose and helps you to look toward the future.
    • Laugh and find humor in your day.
    • When one is in a state of grieving a loss, whether that be a person or situation, having fun seems like an impossible task. In those spaces of life simply focus on something or some aspect that you can be grateful for.
  • Be open-minded to learn from experience. You can not change what has happened, but you can open your mind to learn from it.
  • To get past the “poor me” syndrome I ask myself this question, “What is one positive lesson I can learn from this experience?” 
  • Remember back on how you’ve coped with hardships in the past, what skills and strategies helped you then through those difficult times. Put them into practice again.
    • Journal about your past experiences. Take a moment to look at what you have written to help you identify any repeat behaviors, positive or negative, to help guide your behavior in the future.
  • Create a hopeful outlook. You may be in a tough situation right now, or memories of the pcan’t change the past, but you can always look toward the future. Accepting and even anticipating change makes it easier to adapt and view new challenges with less anxiety.

  • Take care of yourself. You are an original. There is no one else like you; therefore, no one else can tend to your needs and feelings better than you can.
    • Participate in activities and hobbies you enjoy.
    • Include physical activity in your daily routine.
    • Get plenty of sleep.
    • Eat a healthy diet.
    • Practice stress management and relaxation techniques especially positive messages to feed your mind such as the examples I have posted on this page.

  • Be proactive. When life offers challenges and struggles you may find yourself saying something like…” oh well, it’s ok…” No, it’s not ok. This statement as well as others are a quick fix of brushing off or stuffing the emotion inside.
    • Don’t ignore your problems. The best solution is to figure out what needs to be done, make a plan, and take action.
    • Refrain from making excuses or blaming
    • Take more responsibility for my own actions.
    • Build your mental strength for resilience now. And then when you need to take the time to recover from a major setback, traumatic event, or loss, you will have the inner support to know that your situation can improve if you work at it.

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