Resilience is a word you will start to hear a lot more about these days. But what does resilience mean and how does it impact you?
This is just a short piece where I have pulled together all the little bits that I have learned over the last few months on this topic. I hope that it makes sense and that you might be able to pick up some nuggets for yourself.
Something for the Military!
When I first stared to research for this article, I thought that resilience was mental strength. Something that was related to the army or special defence forces.
US Marine Corp
With that in mind I started to read some books on the military to see what I could learn.
Previously I have written about the American military and in particular the US Marine Corp. They have a slogan that no one gets left behind (no man left behind).
This really intrigued me. As I think it resembles one of the key values of The Lemonade Kart. Being that we are all part of team and as such have a responsibility to each other to not let our team members fall behind.
So, what is the definition of Resilience?
Resilience – the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties, toughness.Dictionary Definition
I wasn’t far off the mark when I initially thought that it has something to do with Mental Strength.
Now that we know what Resilience is. Is it something that we should work on and improve? I am sure that you have all answered YES to that little question.
To kick that piece off resilience is a skill that you can work on and build over time – it’s never too late to start.
We can face all kinds of adversity in life. Things that happen to us. Such as illness, loss of a loved one, abuse, bullying, job loss, and financial problems. Then there are the things that we face together as a society such as war, terrorism or a global pandemic, such as Covid-19. Nowadays we need to cope with and work through very challenging life experiences. Therefore, working on our resilience is something that is extremely important and necessary.
Something that was once left for those in the military can now be used by all of in everyday life.
I’ve also spoken before about mindset and the two different types of mindset. Fixed Mindset and Growth Mindset. In terms of resilience, we should adopt a Growth Mindset.
There are a few different areas that we need to work on to develop our resilience – they are:
Compassion – become more compassionate both with ourselves and others.
Gratitude – to be able to express gratitude when somebody does something nice for us.
Meaning – spend time discovering what our meaning in life actually is. Some work around our personal values will also help us here too.
Acceptance – being acceptant of situations we find ourselves in. Also being acceptant of the people that surround us. Not always looking to unnecessarily change ourselves or others.
Forgiveness – being able to forgive and move on from situations.
Trust me when I say it is actually far easier to write all this than actually put it into practice. However if you begin to make little changes and adapt every day. You will begin to notice a difference.
There are other factors that we can work on that will build us towards improving our resilience:
If we surround ourselves with like minded people that it’s far easier to adopt new ways of thinking and work on new skills. While I was in hospital recently, we discussed whether people were radiators or drains. A radiator was the person to gravitate towards while a drain was to be avoided.
Being able to communicate effectively can help. I always thought that I was a great communicator. Recently I discovered that I was a great talker, which didn’t necessarily make me a good communicator. I have been working on my ability to both ask questions and listen to the answers I am given. This feeds into being compassionate and can help to build empathy.
This is one of the biggest things I have had to work on since having my own breakdown earlier in the year. I was very emotionally unregulated (and I still can be). How are we to ever objectively look at a situation if we fly off the handle, get annoyed, angry or sad and upset. If we are to become more compassionate, accepting, forgiving or grateful we need to be more emotionally regulated and balanced. We must not let emotional bias cloud our judgement. Having emotional resilience allows us to know what we are feeling and why.
I hope that this little article helps you to understand better what resilience is, and what you could do to improve your own personal resilience.
One thing that struck me while writing the article was that perhaps its a subject that should be taught at school. There are so many different components to the overall topic that it would be beneficial to students who face adversity while in school. How to cope and deal with bullying, exam stress and the large question of what they wish to achieve in life.
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