Before finally building one of the most successful car companies of the world, Henry Ford confronted multiple failures; went bankrupt five times.
After being diagnosed with a stage IV cancer (epithelioid hemangioendothelioma) affecting her liver and lungs, Kris Carr did not let her disease overwhelm her; instead she deployed her devastating experience to help others by sharing her battle story in the form of a series of books and documentaries; and eventually emerged as a well-known expert on healthy living.
After losing her left arm as a result of a shark bite, Bethany Hamilton did not allow this devastation ruin her passion, rather turned her distress into professional surfing and succeeded to win the first place in the Explorer Women’s Division of the NSSA National Championships
Do you know all of these famous personalities had one thing in common? That is, they did not become overwhelmed by challenges of life; they had the ability to effectively deal with highs and lows of life; and they knew how to transform pain into possibility.
Individuals who possess this ability to effectively cope with problems and setbacks are resilient ones and the ability itself is known as resilience – an ability to successfully bounce back from crisis, distress, setbacks or adversities – it enables people to embrace and adapt to difficult circumstances and move on.
No matter your pathway of life is trouble free and peaceful, you may confront challenges anywhere along this path and these challenges may desperately break you – so you need to be resilient enough to successfully deal with them i.e. bounce back and move on.
Here is why resilience is an important skill to work on and how you may build it:
Resilience encourages a realistic mindset
Whenever we develop a master plan for our lives we usually imagine that the graph of our life events will be a straight line but keep in mind life is not that straightforward, there will be conflicts, uncertainties and chaos along our way and we have to develop a mindset to deal with them effectively. So, if we are resilient enough then we will be able to deal with them successfully otherwise we may fall apart. Making room for complications in our life encourages a realistic mindset and this is what that is necessary for moving forward.
Resilience keeps us from giving up
When we confront unfortunate things in our life, it’s very hard for us to keep moving, we overwhelm and quit but this must not be the case – successful people don’t possess this kind of attitude. Successful individuals don’t say to life ‘why me’ they say ‘try me’. So, don’t get caught into negative emotions when difficult situations surround you; try to harness positive emotions in even stressful times. For it, you have to work on your resilience because when you will be resilient enough you will not allow your life challenges let you down and in this way you will never give up.
Resilience turns challenges into opportunities
The main idea behind resilience is change is inevitable. There is a famous quote by John Allen Paulos “Uncertainty is the only certainty”. We confront trouble when we resist change, consequently we are compelled to live a life full of pain and suffering. But if we possess resilience, there are bright chances that we will accept change and its very first and most important step towards turning challenges into opportunities.
Ways to build resilience:
1. Cultivate optimism
To bounce back from setbacks, you need to cultivate optimism in your life, because when you are optimistic you stay positive in negative situations, and you pay attention to only positive aspects of a thing and ignore others. To cultivate optimism in your life, first of all you have to pay attention to optimistic and pessimistic forces in your life; try to get rid of those pessimistic forces step by step – first let out those forces that you can get rid of immediately and then let out others when possible.
Next try to be grateful for what you have because being grateful enhances your positive energies by considering those good things that have happened to you in your life and finally, trying to improve your attitude with others is also one of the proven ways to cultivate optimism. When your attitude towards others is positive, you share positivity with others and you welcome more positivity in your life that leads to an optimistic attitude – optimistic attitude gives you more power to deal with challenging situations and this is actually resilience.
2. Strengthen your conflict tolerance ability
Confronting conflicts is also one of the forms that life challenges may take. But you must be strong enough to tolerate these conflicts and move on – this enables you to be effective in an environment where people have opposing views for you. Consider for a moment, you are handling a work project with other members of the team and you are thinking of a new and innovative way of handling an aspect of that project – you know very well that if you will present that idea, other member of the team will oppose it because every time you present a creative idea they use to criticize it. But when they criticize it, they also present additional ideas on how to improve that, what you are actually suggesting – this will lead to the emergence of a new plan. That new plan may even be better than the one you suggested initially.
Be mentally prepared for the criticism before presenting an idea; and be patient to listen to the opposing comments of others; and judge these opposing views carefully to help improve your own suggestion or point of view. When you have a strong ability to tolerate conflicts, you effectively confront life challenges and bounce back successfully.
3. Develop persistence
To effectively deal with highs and lows of life, you need to be persistent in challenging, uncertain and unstable situations because when you keep moving whatever the circumstances are, you don’t let your failures overwhelm you. To develop persistence, keep on repeating your efforts; consider changing your strategy where possible and inevitable; follow successful people around you; don’t forget to appreciate yourself for everything you accomplish on a day to day basis; and most importantly start taking your first step towards persistence from now.
Individuals who possess greater persistence enjoy a higher degree of personal resilience. So develop your persistence in order to develop or improve your personal resilience
4. Think Big
Whenever you confront a problem or something unexpected, don’t be stressed, instead start thinking big. When you look at the larger picture then the problems you are currently confronting seem minor or even meaningless; when problems seem minor or meaningless, it’s easy to bounce back and move on. To start thinking big, always consider the available possibilities; define and pursue your dreams; always imagine things in the long-term and be curious enough to explore and discover.
5. Protect yourself from others’ negative energy
We are all surrounded by negative and toxic people who use to ruin our positive energies – and this attitude turns out to be more hazardous when we confront challenges and obstacles. Instead of encouraging us to cope with these challenging circumstances, they take this as an opportunity to let us down. So, in order to bounce back successfully, we need to keep ourselves away from such toxic individuals.
6. Learn to be more adaptable
Resilience is the skill that enables us to adapt to difficult circumstances and move on, so to build resilience you must learn to be more adaptable. In order to be more adaptable, you must
- change your thought process – let go for the wellness of yourself and others.
- Take risks
- Be open minded
- Learn consistently
7. Find a permanent source of motivation
you must find a permanent source of motivation that’s actually in the form of intrinsic motivation. Once you find a source of intrinsic motivation, no matter something bad happens to you; you don’t get demotivated; you keep on moving and this is what we call resilience.
Resilience is an ability and an important skill that you must possess to turn your life challenges into success. By building resilience, you don’t let your life challenges break you and the good news is that it’s not an inborn ability, you may work to develop it
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