The importance of resilience
So what is resilience and is it common?
Resilience can be defined as an individual’s ability to properly adapt to stress and adversity. It is about an individual’s ability to manage difficult emotions that arise in times of difficulty, without supressing them.
Research shows that resilience is actually more common, than uncommon, as life has many ups and downs and people are having to adapt all the time to many difficult situations.
A person’s attitude is the most important element of having resilience. If someone generally has a negative thinking style, this is not helpful to having resilience.
There are a few many important attributes associated with resilience:
- The capacity to make realistic plans and take steps to carry them out.
- A positive and self-accepting view of yourself and confidence in your strengths and abilities.
- Skills in communication and problem solving.
- The capacity to manage strong feelings and impulses without complaining about any struggles or falling into self-pity when setbacks arise.
- Adaptability-The ability to act flexibly in changing or challenging circumstances.
- Asking for support or accepting support from others. Positive, supportive relationships are key to coping in tough times.
- Having humour- Finding light moments in depressing times can sometimes help lift the mood.
- Being aware of unhealthy thoughts that may pop up and don’t benefit you in times of adversity.
Now that you are aware of what makes someone resilient, what happens when you need to develop more resilience? What steps could you take?
Here are a few things to keep in mind:
- Take care of yourself and treat yourself with respect, comfort & acceptance.
- Try and be hopeful for the future no matter what the current circumstances. A positive outlook is very important.
- Ask for support from friends or family
- Look for opportunities of self-discovery. Adversity isn’t obviously welcomed but if something negative happens, look at how you handle it and learn something about yourself.
- Accept that change is part of living
- Make decisions or take actions when confronted with a difficult situation. Don’t avoid it!
- Set small goals that are easy for you to reach. It doesn’t matter how small. The more you achieve, the better you will feel
- If you are spiritual, use your faith to support you.Prayer or meditation can be very helpful
- Journaling, blogging, art therapy or other therapies can also be useful in developing resilience.
I would love to hear your thoughts on resilience. Is there anything in particular that happened which improved your resilience? Do you think you are resilient or do you think you could develop better resilience?
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