In highlighting recently the idea of choice and that we can choose how we respond to our difficulties, which was brought out in Julie Genovese’s interview and in Viktor Frankl’s quotes, the concept of resilience comes to mind here.
What exactly is resilience? The Mayo Clinic’s definition is, “Resilience means being able to adjust to life’s misfortunes and setbacks.” Interestingly, it comes from the Latin word ‘resilire’ meaning to ‘leap back’.
So how do we bounce back from our difficulties and regain our equilibrium? How do we adjust to life’s challenges and not stay stuck in the mire of it?
It seems that some people are just naturally more adept at adapting and seem to have the innate inner strength to stay afloat and keep themselves together. But what if we’re not so innately resilient? Can we do things to build ourselves up and fortify ourselves?
Let’s look at 8 ways to increase our resilience for those trying times:
- Take care of our total selves – body, mind and soul. Feed ourselves nutritious food, work our muscles so they are strong and meditate/breathe/pray so we can hear our inner self and/or talk to a higher power.
- Gather as much information as possible on the issue we are facing. Knowledge is power. Being proactive in our educational quest gives us some control as to options and choices.
- Allow negative feelings to surface. Don’t bury them or look to deny them. They’re real and valid and need to be let out, appropriately. It’s in the expression of them that relief may be found. Painful emotions are heavy to carry around. They need to be unloaded so we have the energy for our task at hand.
- Know who our support people are. Who can we turn to with our deep, painful feelings? Who can we go to for concrete help, favors?
- Keep the larger purpose in mind. Incorporate Nietzsche’s life-affirming quote, “He who has a Why to live can bear almost any How.” It can truly keep us going to deal with what’s at hand. If we stay focused on the bigger picture, we can hopefully take the smaller steps necessary to do that which needs to be done.
- Find gratitude and appreciation in even the smallest things. As long as we walk this earth, there is beauty to be found. (Read some of my interviews with people who have been able to thrive, not just survive, beyond some horrific circumstances.) We can train our minds to count our blessings even amidst our difficulties.
- Do something pleasurable every day, something that brings joy. Put even that few minutes of enjoyment into the day.
- Self –awareness of our thought processes can help us restructure our thinking. Do we live with the awareness that change is inevitable? Are we flexible, sometimes, to be able to go with the flow? Are we excessive worriers over things that may never happen? Do we over-‘catastrophize’?
This list is but a few key points in resiliency building. Nothing here is necessarily easy. But each point can be worked on and attained.
Any points to add? Please do, in the comment section. Thank you for reading. Stop by again and spread the word; oh and please subscribe, if you haven’t already.