It can be many things, but overall it is the ability to bounce back in difficult situations and adapt to life’s challenges or toughness. In order to do this we need mental, physical, emotional and behavioral flexibility. There are various things to help in building resilience.
Find and Grow Your Circle
People who have the ability to bounce back usually have a good support system. This system can be family, friends, coaches, teachers, colleagues, mentors and so on. It has been seen that humans have the ability to seek out support systems when things aren’t going their way even as children. Building your circle is cultivating those around you who are supportive and willing to help build you back up.
Find Self Worth in All Areas
It isn’t healthy to find yourself feeling important in only one area of your life, if something goes wrong in that particular area it can be hard to find your self worth. You should find several satisfying areas in your life- it can be family, friends, faith, work, your habits/hobbies, or leadership roles. If you can find multiple areas that enrich your life you have more positives to look at. If you have a setback in one area you can find a sense of connections and bounce back in multiple others. Find a sense of self worth, awareness and competence.
Get in Touch With a Sense of Self
Become in tune with yourself and your emotions! Emotional intelligence is important. Your whole life is based on the decisions you make, being in touch with yourself, your emotions, your triggers, your relationships and so on all help make those decisions. Observe yourself, how do you react under stress? How do they affect you physically, emotionally and psychologically? Have the ability to find your coping mechanisms, it could be humor, interactions, optimism, stress relieving hobbies, a stop break or so on. Finding ways to deal with smaller situations help when a bigger life stressor arrives.
Prep for the Worst and Failure
Looking ahead for possible failures and worst outcomes can help us better prepare for the future and plan for possible opportunities ahead of time. Look at situations and how you choose to react and understand how you deal with change, because it is inevitable. Failures happen so the expectancy of disappointment can sometimes be a good thing. Highly successful people sometimes get overly devastated by life outcomes, being able to cope with these makes you more resilient. Give yourself the possibility to fail sometimes. Success emerges from failures.
Lessons and Control
Look for lessons in not every success, but also in the failures. Challenges are how we learn. Adversity is our greatest teacher, difficult times lead to bounces in better directions. Learning from our challenges can give us unseen value from before. Some of this can start with breaking down bigger problems, one big issue can usually be broken down into various smaller ones that can be more manageable. Just control what you can by making small changes. Stop trying to control the things you can’t, by letting go of the things you can’t you start making improvements on the things you can and dig your way out of the hole.
Don’t feel the need to be perfect. Shed your shame, feeling embarrassed or any other negative feelings in a situation we may have failed at is normal. We can all be hard on ourselves. People can make mistakes or have poor judgment, instead of drowning in the negativity- find solutions. Find a sense of something better ahead. You have power over how you’re going to look at and deal with a situation, don’t let other people choose that for you.
Forgiveness of not only others but also yourself. Being able to move on and release past hurts is indispensable to resilience. Remind yourself what you are grateful for. This is a skill we can master with practice.
Having a sense of purpose is critical. Have values, these are unique to each individual. Knowing what is important to you can help you prioritize what is meaningful. Having a sense of purpose outside of our jobs or everyday role which likely changes, but our purpose should not. Deciding our values and motivation factors help us to put greater purpose into the world. The ups and downs in life will all be a perspective when we connect with a greater purpose.
-Meghan Cool, CPT and Nutrition Coach