• Sue Doo

What is resilience?

noun

The capacity to recover quickly from difficulties, toughness.

The ability of a substance or object to spring back into shape; elasticity.

“To fight for change tomorrow we need to build resilience today.”

From ‘Option B’ by Sheryl Sandberg & Adam Grant


When problems occur and this can be from a ‘global pandemic’ to the loss of a loved one or any of the other stressors we have along the way. We have two ways of coming through this: We can get waylaid by fear, anger, and depression or We wobble, fall down and then drag ourselves up and carry on with our lives, while still nursing the pain, but continuing to grow and live a little more each day.

Which path would you prefer?

To wobble and pull through, for sure! Some how we find a way to keep moving forwards, bouncing back and working through the difficulties. This is resilience. It is something that comes from within us and we find it in the support network that we have around us. I have been reading ‘Option B - Facing Adversity, Building Resilience and Finding Joy’ by Sheryl Sandberg & Adam Grant and this book is amazing. At its core it describes how we deal with grief, how sometimes we have no choice but to choose ‘option b’ and I found their discussion around resilience fascinating. While bringing up my children, the buzz was around having ‘resilient kids’ who were able to cope when the going got tough and would be able to overcome any situation. They point out that thankfully resilience isn’t fixed and its something that we can all develop, learn and work on throughout our lives. Many studies show how the parenting style you experience as a child and the other adults in your formative years can play an important role in you developing your resilience. In the book they also explain the need to developing 4 core beliefs. From encouraging children to learn from their failures, understand and share the strengths that they have, along with showing them that they have some autonomy over their lives and that as the person they are, they matter. By providing a base with these elements we are encouraging children to recognise when things go wrong that its OK, we fall, and we can get up again and move on. But we are stronger for it. Resilience is often noted as being at the ‘heart of well-being’ and you will find many pillars or lists of how we can develop our resilience.

So, what can we do to build resilience? · Look after your mind by practising gratitude. Think about the small things in your life that bring you joy. · Learn to help your body cope better with stress by exercising, eating healthy, drinking water, as well as doing mindfulness exercises. · Connect with others and work in a group towards a chosen goal to build motivation and positive interaction. I have included a link to Positive.Pal - a Facebook post that provides a Free Positive planner & I know my daughters who are late teens and early 20's have really enjoyed using the sheet. https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?id=113507693537014&story_fbid=164502158437567 It takes time and effort to build your resilience but its worth the effort and provides you with the tools to cope so much better with the ups and downs that life will throw at you.

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