Becoming Resilient

Resilience is a necessary skill to master. Here are some tips to start flexing your resilience muscle.
Believe it or not, resilience is not something you are born with. It is a life skill that needs to be learnt just like any other skill. Your ability to handle life's curveballs and more importantly recover from them is crucial to maintaining balance and protecting your mental health.
Resilience should not be a tool you only whip out during the harder times though. You need to be practicing resilience daily with all of the normal life stressors as well. This daily practice will only help serve you better when a bigger curveball comes along.
We engage our physical core when lifting heavy objects and engage resilience to lift life's heavy loads.
Several factors can increase your ability to be resilient:
  1. Social support
  2. Effective and realistic planning
  3. Self-esteem
  4. Coping mechanisms
  5. Communication skill
  6. Ability to emotionally regulate

To build your strength in these areas, try these simple tricks:

  1. Ask yourself whether this stressor will matter in 5 years time. If it won't, then let it go.
  2. Don't let others undermine your own self-worth. - believe in yourself and love yourself unconditionally. Let go of toxic relationships and hold tight to those who believe in you.
  3. Be vulnerable. Recognise that it is part of the normal human experience to be sad sometimes. Grief and anger are a normal response to difficult life events. It is part of the brain's way of processing.Allow yourself to feel and then start to move forward. (If however you find it hard to move forward and feel stuck in sadness, this could signal the onset of depression and you need to address this with your doctor.)
  4. Be inspired. Spend time with people who inspire you. Read an inspiring story or listen to an inspiring podcast.
  5. Learn to forgive. Forgiveness is a gift to you not to the other person. Recognise that each of us have our own struggles that we express in different ways. Be willing to forgive easily and let it go.
  6. Practice gratitude. Gratitude practice does not have to be only about the big stuff. It can be being grateful for your morning coffee, a good night's sleep, a smile from a stranger. Start looking for the little things to be grateful for.
  7. Practice possible vs probable. Quite often when you're faced with a stressor it is easy to jump to the worst case scenario. Ask yourself 'Is this outcome possible or probable?". More often than not, you will find that whilst it is possible it's not going to be probable. If it's not probable, stop planning for it and let it go.
  8. Practice being flexible. If it's not working, be willing to try or learn a different approach.
  9. Focus on what you can control - not what you can't. This includes how you respond, how you communicate how you're feeling and what you need, and what actionable steps you can take to resolve the issue.
  10. Talk, talk, talk. Talk to a friend who believes in you. Find people who understand what you're going through. See a counsellor or psychologist.There is strength in numbers.

I hope you find these tips helpful. Let me know what you think in the comments.

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