What is Resilience?
Resilience is the ability to cope with and recover from setbacks. But in saying that, resilience does not eliminate stress or erase life’s difficulties. People who possess this quality don’t see life through rose-colored lenses. Moreover, they understand that setbacks happen and that sometimes life is hard and painful.
In the wake of large-scale traumas such as natural disasters and COVID-19, many individuals demonstrated great resilience. Now they still experienced the negative emotions that come after a tragedy, but their mental outlook allowed them to work through their feelings and recover.
Signs of Resilience
Resilient people often have several different characteristics that help them weather life’s challenges. Some of the signs include:
- A survivor mentality: When people are resilient, they view themselves as survivors. They know that even when things are difficult, they can keep going until they make it through.
- Effective emotional regulation: Resilience is marked by an ability to manage emotions in the face of stress. This doesn’t mean that resilient people don’t experience strong emotions such as anger, sadness, or fear. It means that they recognize those feelings are temporary and can be managed until they pass.
- Feeling in control: Resilient people tend to have a strong internal locus of control. They know that their actions can play a part in determining the outcome of events.
- Problem-solving skills: Resilient people look at the situation rationally when problems arise. Then they come up with a solution that will make a difference.
- Self-compassion: Another sign is showing self-acceptance and self-compassion. Resilient people treat themselves with kindness, especially when things are hard.
- Social support: Having a solid network of supportive people is another sign. Resilient people recognize the importance of support and knowing when they need to ask for help.
Types of Resilience
Resilience represents an ability to handle life’s setbacks and overall represents adaptability. However, there are also different types of resilience. Types that can influence a person’s ability to cope with various forms of stress.
Physical resilience refers to how the body deals with change and recovers from physical demands, illnesses, and injuries. It also affects how people age.
Mental resilience refers to a person’s ability to adapt to change and uncertainty. People who possess this type of resilience are flexible and calm during times of crisis. They use mental strength to solve problems, move forward, and remain hopeful even when they are facing setbacks.
Emotional resilience involves being able to regulate emotions during times of stress. Resilient people are aware of their emotional reactions and tend to be in touch with their inner life. They can calm their mind and manage their emotions when they are dealing with negative experiences.
This also helps people maintain a sense of optimism when times are tough. Because they are emotionally resilient, they understand that difficult emotions won’t last forever.
Social resilience, which may also be called community resilience, involves the ability of groups to recover from difficult situations. It involves people connecting with others and working together to solve problems that affect people both individually and collectively.
Social or community aspects include coming together after disasters and supporting each other socially. Becoming aware of the risks and building a sense of community.
How to have more Resilience
If you would like to become more resilient, consider these tips:
Work on your Coping Skills
The better you are at coping, the better able you will be to handle setbacks. Strong coping skills include reframing your thoughts, stopping thinking errors, identifying creative solutions, and increasing your internal locus of control. An Internal locus of control yields a powerful feeling of competence and confidence that makes you more resilient. You feel more capable of managing and problem-solving stressful situations. You know that you are living life, and life isn’t living you.
Build your Optimism
Optimists feel more in control of their decisions. To build optimism, focus on what “you” can do and not what is reliant on anyone else. Adapting quickly, both emotionally and physically, takes the form of both emotional and physiological adaptation (fight-or-flight response). To become a resilient optimist, you must believe you can handle challenges as they arise.
Learn to Self-Regulate
I’m sure you’ve heard the term “keeping a cool head.” Easier said, than done, right? Reining in your moods is empowering and a confidence booster. You can do this by employing emotion regulation methods, such as guided imagery, meditation, and mindfulness. Take a few minutes to note your time and place in space using objects or details around you. Next, breathe into your body. Make sure your mood and the event are consistent with each other. Don’t view the situation as worse than it is.
Strengthen your Communication
Being able to communicate honestly is necessary to become resilient. Don’t be defensive and or let your ego get in the way. Both will hinder your ability to cope emotionally with an issue and move on. Use your family and friends. Let them help provide a sense of security and comfort during troubling times. You can’t develop resiliency alone on an island.
Final thoughts on Resilience
As you can see, resiliency is necessary for you to be successful on your path toward improved emotional health. It will guide you to sustained satisfaction in your everyday life.
Source – Psychology Today and Verywell Mind
Need more inspiration on the Power of Resilience, how about a book?
Check out these inspirational books on resilience!
Becoming by Michelle Obama
A story of the first African American first lady and the life experiences that shaped her journey. A journey from the south side of Chicago to the White House. Obama titled her book Becoming because she is constantly evolving, “becoming” the woman she aspires to be.
Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover
Raised in the mountains of Idaho by her Mormon fundamentalist family, Tara Westover was homeschooled until the age of 17. She had never been in a classroom or see a doctor. Her life story is a testament to the human capacity for resilience and perseverance.
Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth
The New York Times bestseller, Grit, is the culmination of years of research. It defines grit as “a blend of passion and persistence”. It demonstrates that the road to achievement is not talent, but grit.
I hope you enjoyed this post and I leave you with this closing thought.
“Falling down is a part of life, getting back up is living.”
Jose’ N. Harris