What is resiliency?
It the art of bouncing back from adversity, responding flexibly to and accepting an unexpected new reality, believing in a positive outcome, considering possible actions or reactions, learning from the experience and growing to be a stronger person. It is not what happens but how you respond to what happens that’s important.
Why is it important to be resilient?
Many believe that we were put on this earth to learn lessons and not just to have a great time. If we are not resilient we will not learn the lessons and instead become victims, a burden on society, have a miserable time and our health will also likely suffer.
One of the things I have learned from being a life and business coach for many years is that it is the tough times that make us stronger. “When the going gets tough, the tough get going”, is an apt saying here. Every time something happens to me, that I would rather not have happen, I say to myself, “What is there to learn from this experience?” There is a heroic, inner journey to undertake.
A great person to model for a resiliency strategy is Viktor Frankl. He wrote about his experiences of the concentration camps in Germany during World War II in “Man’s Search For Meaning”.
He decided that his situation was not personal, pervasive or permanent. Instead of being a victim he helped others in the camps, found humor in the situation, developed his Logo-Therapy psychotherapy approach and imaged himself lecturing to a class of university students after the war ended.
What is resiliency really?
Resilient people accept that everything happens for a reason.
Resiliency is about having three strong “selfs” that guard your access to a wide range of personal attitudes, talents and abilities. It is about bringing stability to a chaotic, uncertain, or ambiguous situation.
Self-confidence is how you act under pressure using the somatic nervous system that controls your physical actions.
Self-esteem is how you feel about yourself and is controlled by the autonomic nervous system.
Self-concept is how you think about what and who you are and is managed by the brain and central nervous system.
Symptoms of poor resiliency include: –
- Increased stress, depression, sadness, irritation, frustration, shame, guilt and anxiety
- Being easily distracted
- Showing indecisiveness and poor initiative
- Lacking purpose, passion and meaning
- Having more conflict in relationships with issues concerning trust and respect
- Evidence of poor health
- A focus on the past grievances
- Feelings of overwhelm
- Inability to plan
- Diminishing performance and sense of responsibility
How to become resilient?
Be solution oriented by addressing the issue. Establish your boundaries and supportive values and beliefs. Examine disempowering beliefs and limiting negative emotions. This can successfully be done via a coaching program or workshop.
Ask yourself, “What are my strengths and abilities?”
List your positive feelings about yourself to show appreciation and forgiveness. Start a gratitude journal.
Develop ten “I am developing strength and confidence” statements.
Remain optimistic knowing that the situation is temporary, and limited to one aspect of my life, is not my fault and was brought on by external circumstances, or I accept my role in this crisis and I will find a way to cope.
Also network, use your time usefully, keep your goals in mind, never stop learning, look after yourself be curious, laugh, question, experiment and play.
What gifts and talents will you share with the world if you become a strong and resilient person? How will you be able to make the world a better place? The world needs you right now to allow serendipity to occur.
After the world ended, Frankl remarried as his first wife had died in the war, created a new form of psychotherapy, showed no signs of post-traumatic stress and lived a full life to the age of 92 years.
About the Author
Gaye O’Brien is a Life, Business & Executive Coach, NLP Trainer, Time Line Therapist, Hypnotherapist and International Best-Selling Author of “NLP Essentials for Teachers”. As a catalyst for transformational change Gaye shares her insights in an inspirational, educational and entertaining way, with businesses and individuals who desire to make their greatest contribution to the planet and co-create a more enlightened world.