Consider how you reacted when faced with a recent setback or struggle. Did a sticky situation stop you in your tracks? Or did overwhelming emotion or fear of uncertainty stop you from making progress in something? Maybe instead, you took the challenge in your stride.
Did you manage to find a way through the situation? Did you see it as an opportunity to learn a myriad of things about yourself, and the world around you? Coming face-to-face with obstacles reveals your capacity to deal with them.
When you can evaluate how you reacted to specific life experiences, you can see where you lie on the resiliency scale.
How resilient people cope with life’s ups and downs
At times when it feels like the odds are stacked against you, remember that we all face hardships.
Resilient people experience adversity as regularly as the rest of us, but despite their struggles, they deal with difficult moments with more ease, awareness and less stress. The steps they take include drawing on their ability to reframe a struggle as an opportunity to learn, and engaging in strategies to manage stress.
Resilient folk have also discovered that once you surrender to the existence of life’s hurdles, they become easier to deal with. Trying to avoid them tends to make matters worse, leaving you in denial and out of sync.
I can be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it.
How to train yourself to be more resilient
If you succumb to your struggles and catch yourself admiring those who demonstrate strength of character, remember such superpowers are trainable. The way that you respond is within your control and through awareness and action, your resiliency is something you can choose to enhance.
While a lack of resiliency can leave you overwhelmed and unable to cope when things unexpectedly change course, by building your resilience you’re in a better position to manage your mental wellbeing and boost your ability to bounce back quicker when the toughest of times strike.
Even in the darkest of moments, the human spirit can individually and collectively rise strong to overcome. It is possible that your setbacks may serve as a platform to unleash unknown quantities of strength from within.
A tough time can take you on such a journey that instead of bouncing back, you move beyond, to a place where a stronger, braver and more resilient you now exists.
4 ways to become more resilient
Challenges and opportunities
According to Stanford University lecturer Tina Seelig, using words such as ‘challenges’ and ‘opportunities’ instead of ‘problems’ can help you to tap into your innovation, increasing the likelihood that you’ll come up with creative solutions to solve them.
Can you control it?
When things don’t go your way, consider what is and isn’t within your control. Rather than trying to tackle everything, or feeling totally helpless, take a moment to look for the things that you can work on and accept that some things may fall beyond that.
A negative outlook can make it tricky to problem-solve, as you focus on what’s wrong and ruminate on it. In contrast, an optimistic outlook can be helpful as it leaves you less stressed and better able to creatively problem solve. Try bringing a positive spin to a tough situation to help you resolve it quicker.
Ask for help.
Resilient people aren’t afraid to ask for help, understanding that their connections are especially valuable in times of need. Reach out to others to talk about your struggles and seek support from people around you when you need it most.