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Additional ways to build resilience

flowerpot with plant and heart

In the last article I shared with you many characteristics of people who manage well during difficult times. I would like to highlight several more for you in this article. Again, when faced with adversity, resilient people:

  • Are positive and optimistic. Author/Philosopher Lawrence Pearsall Jacks said “The pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; the optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” Studies have shown that positive people not only deal better with stress but also increase their life span. Strengthen your optimism by:
    • Being around positive people that support you
    • Laughing and surrounding yourself with things that help relieve stress
    • Practicing positive self-talk
    • Not worrying over the things you have no control over
  • Appreciate their blessings and practice gratitude. Take time to list what you are grateful for and it will help reduce stress and build a more positive outlook. It’s hard to be stressed and thankful at the same time!
  • Are spiritual. This can be in a religious sense, or just believing in a bigger purpose than yourself.
  • Practice self-care. Being kind to oneself is one of the most critical elements to bouncing back and moving ahead. Resilient people take care of themselves by getting adequate sleep, a healthy diet, exercise and practicing stress reduction techniques. It doesn’t matter what method is used – music, reading, yoga, mindfulness meditation, walking, etc. – it just needs to be something that helps you relax and that you can build into your lives.
  • Have good support systems. When faced with adversity, resilient people do not feel they have to struggle on their own. They know they have other people and support to help them. They feel a sense of belonging and connectedness and have strong relationships with others. Having social support systems are important to individuals – research links the presence of social support to successful overall psychological well-being. Having social supports contributes to improved cognitive function and memory and also reduces stress and lowers blood pressure. During this pandemic, we can still stay connected with others through phone calls, texts, e-mails, and videoconferencing apps.
  • Have vision and purpose. This provides motivation and meaning to each and every day.
  • Practice good communication, which will assist in meeting life’s challenges, help resolve conflict, and promote loyalty and trust.
  • Take a balanced approach to work including disengaging from work when they are “off the clock.” According to Author/Columnist Harvey Mackay ““Decide what your priorities are and how much time you’ll spend on them. If you don’t, someone else will.” They find a more balanced way to work that will help eliminate spillover and make them more productive.

I hope that this article and the last one shed a little light on what helps prepare a person to get through tough times and how resilience can make challenges into opportunities for growth. This American Proverb recaps the message: “The only difference between stumbling blocks and stepping stones is how you use them.” Please be safe out there and stay well!