5 Key Ways to Build Resilience

October 18, 2018


In this month's blog post I want to talk about resilience. It's important for us all. 

The Webster's dictionary definition of resilience is:
⦁    The ability of something to return to it's original shape after it has been pulled, stretched or bent etc
⦁    The ability to become strong, healthy or successful again after something bad happens. 

It's this second definition that I'm focusing on. Resilience is what I like to call bounce back ability. 
According to Southwick et al (2016) "Resilience is generally defined as the ability of an individual to bend but not break, to bounce back" and to "to adapt well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats or even significant sources of stress" (American Psychological Association quoted by Southwick et al (2016)


Imagine for a second you lose your job. It's a job you loved. You Sit around moaning about how awful it is (and it is, of course, it isn't nice) - but after an initial whinge, the best thing to do is to get back up again, dust yourself off and go show the world what you are made of. Now, you can only really do the second part if you have a good level of resilience. 
Here's the really good news - Resilience is a skill and a skill that can be honed.

5 ways to build resilience 
⦁    Focus on gratititude - Start trying to see the good in every day things. It doesn't have to be anything big but focussing on the good takes practice because it's so easy to focus ion the negatives and get stuck there. Perhaps, try keeping a gratitude journal.
⦁    Accept that everything changes - Change is part of life. Not all change is bad
⦁    Be Hopeful - We have choices. Choosing to be hopeful is a choice. It's a mindset really. We can either choose to focus on the negatives or choose to focus on the positives. To go back to the job loss example: We can choose to sit with "This is rubbish?" "Why me?" "I'll never get another job" or we can choose hope which might look something like this "The next role I get might be even better" "Everything for a reason" "I'll use the time between jobs to nourish myself" 
⦁    Find meaning in Adversity - Whenever something bad happens. There is always a learning opportnity. Learning equals growth. Try not to slip back into negativity here. It's not about being critical of yourself and judging decisions you make but about learning and growing


Find meaning in adversity reminds me of this quote "Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass it's about learning to dance in the rain." It's easy to hit a stumbling block when we realise that lots of things are beyond our control. What if rather than waiting for the situation to change we learn to get the best out of it?


I'd really like to hear about what resilience means to you. If you would like some help building resilience then get in touch today to see how I can help.


World Psychiatry - published Feb 16 Southwick,S. M et al Why some individuals are more resilient than others: the role of social support (online) Accessed: 11th October 18
https://www.psychologytoday.com/gb/blog/ask-dr-darcy/201102/5-tips-increase-resilience accessed 11th October 



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