It is Men’s Health Week 2021 and I thought it was great timing for to write a small piece on RESILIENCE. I am sure you have heard the term before. Do you know what it is? And how it all works?
Just last week I was having the discussion about resilience with my boys, who are each trying to navigate their way through primary school (big boys in Kindy and Year two)! The chat got me thinking more about the role resilience plays in our lives and how we can use it to our advantage.
Adversity is a difficult or unpleasant situation, and it’s a part of life. Throughout our lives we will encounter many uncomfortable and difficult situations. Unfortunately, it is something we cannot avoid, nor should we try – just like training, mental growth makes us stronger. It is up to us as individuals to choose how we react to these testing situations.
Resilience is the quality that allows us to acknowledge failure and implement strategies that allows us to cope. Developing resilience can help you cope adaptively and bounce back after changes, challenges, setbacks, disappointments, and failures. Rather than letting difficulties or bad situations get the better of you, being resilient means finding a way to rise above the negative situation.
The team at Positive Psychology give a great summary below:
Resilience helps you handle stress more positively. Everything in life is about balance. Without the darkness, you would not appreciate the light. Without sadness, you would not appreciate joy. Like the yin and the yang, you need both positive and negative emotions and experiences to appreciate what you have.
TIPS for resilience
Psychologists have identified some key factors that can make a person more resilient in the face of adversity. These include:
- Having a positive attitude.
- Showing optimism.
- Regulating emotions.
- Seeing failure as a form of helpful feedback.
“Research shows that optimism helps blunt the impact of stress on the mind and body in the wake of disturbing experiences. And that gives people access to their own cognitive resources, enabling cool-headed analysis of what might have gone wrong and consideration of behavioural paths that might be more productive.”1
STRATEGIES FOR RESILIENCE
Here are five strategies2 that can help build resilience. Why not try one this Men’s Health Week and see if you can add more to your day-to-day as you progress?
- Change the narrative.
- Face your fears head on.
- Practice self-compassion.
- Engage in mindful breathing techniques.
- Cultivate forgiveness: Let the gripe or grudge go. Forgive and move on.
“Persistence and resilience only come from having been given the chance to work through difficult problems.” Gever Tulley.
Rhys Pritchard, Training Director and Performance Specialist
1 – Sussex Publishers, LLC, Psychology Today 2021 <https://www.psychologytoday.com/au/basics/resilience>
2 – The Greater Good Science Center at the University of California, Berkeley 2021 <https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/five_science_backed_strategies_to_build_resilience>