Building Resilience

“Resilient people immediately look at the problem and say, “What’s the solution to that? What is this trying to teach me?” ” Anonymous.

Resilience is the ability to recover quickly from difficulties;toughness. It takes mental toughness to live life on your own terms apart from outside influences. Behind every challenge, there is an opportunity to learn,grow and evolve. Resilience is especially important if you are determined to live your best life. Is there any other type of life worth living? Being able to bounce back from momentary challenges is a vital skill that can be developed. Throughout history, there have been countless cases of individuals who have risen above their circumstances that they were born into despite receiving absolutely no support from anyone within their family or community. In many cases, they were laughed at and ridiculed for even attempting to rise above seemingly insurmountable obstacles. Even those who were expected to encourage them turned their backs on them. This can be especially the case with certain family members. We would never have advanced as a human race if it wasn’t for resilient individuals from all backgrounds. We couldn’t even begin to count the individuals that were never written about. They could have been your neighbor or classmate. Maybe they were the kids that got picked on relentlessly in school. We humans are natural survivors. In certain cases, it takes us going through traumatic situations to realize how tough we truly are, but it doesn’t have to be that way. True resilience takes mental toughness. As I wrote earlier, it can be learned and developed. After researching the topic, I have identified certain key strategies for building this much needed life skill.

Image result for images about resilience  I agree. Life can be challenging for anybody. Don’t be fooled to think that difficult times are exclusive to one particular group. There is no favoritism. We see, hear and read about people who are considered successful, yet have no clue of what their daily lives look like nor what it took for them to get where they are at that moment. We also don’t know what challenge is “awaiting” them or us , for that matter,”around the corner “. People are people. We each have our “buttons”. Absolutely no one can walk your journey for you. You are on your own. Be determined to enjoy it. If you get “knocked down” in life, learn to get up…. quickly. As long as you are breathing, keep walking… No excuses. It takes resilience to live your best life. Live well. Enough said about that. Let’s look at some strategies. They are in no particular order.

1)Realize That Your Challenge Is Temporary

Your challenge is temporary. There is absolutely no situation in this life that is permanent. Don’t get me wrong. I realize that I will never ever experience certain challenges that others face consistently nor do I make light of them. I genuinely wish each person that reads this post perfect wellness. What I am referring to is the fact that a hardship is an experience ,therefore, it is designed to be temporary. Since that is the case, why not decide to learn all that you can from it. I am a sincere believer that what doesn’t kill you CAN make you stronger IF you set your mind to be “trained” by the event. I believe that it is possible to reap a reward even while experiencing the most devastating of circumstances. Although it takes relentless discipline , it is possible.

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2) Take “Captive” Your Thoughts

Remember that your thoughts are powerful. How you perceive your world and yourself as you relate to that world and others determines what you experience on a moment by moment basis. The term ” taking captive your thoughts pertains to you becoming aware of the thoughts that strengthen you as well as the ones that weaken you. When hit by challenges, it is easy to lose our perspective. It could happen to any one of us. Mastering our thoughts takes consistent practice. It can be difficult. Learning any new skill takes effort. The reward is immeasurable. Our thoughts determine our emotional reaction. Our emotional response determines our actions. Our actions have repercussions…. far reaching ones.

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3)Build Strong Relationships

Create a support network for yourself comprised of people who genuinely support you as much as you support them. You don’t necessarily need a lot of close friends. I prefer a tight knit group in which we might share certain common goals. We don’t always have to agree on every issue. A matter of fact, I choose to surround myself with independent critical thinkers. You don’t need to be part of a clique. Surround yourself with people that genuinely like and respect you for who you are. Ideally, friends know you because you feel comfortable being completely vulnerable around them. They know what motivates you as well as your shortcomings. Friends can be the ones that help you to get back in focus once you have been “derailed” by challenges. They can encourage you by reminding you of your strong points.They will listen to you. Afterwards, “true friends” will give you constructive feedback. Friends care enough about you to tell you what you might need to here instead of simply what you want to hear. They care enough about both your welfare and you to have the courage to do so.

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4)Exercise Regularly

Stay active. Exercising is an excellent way to relieve stress. Exercise releases “feel good” hormones such as endorphins, serotonin and dopamine. These hormones help to alleviate depression and decrease hostility . They have a direct effect on mood and contribute towards positive thinking. If you are feeling better physically, mentally  and emotionally , you will be more likely to bounce back from any challenge that you might be facing at that moment. Exercise contributes towards your overall well being which , in turn, will also help you to relax more . Relax is necessary to charge your batteries.

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5)Learn Not To Take Yourself So Damn Seriously

It is never the end of the world and , if it was, current problems wouldn’t matter anyway!! Chill out. Strive to find the humor in each difficult circumstance. Laughter is great for releasing stress. Realize that each problem comes with a solution “attached” to it even if it might not seem available at that moment.Remember that no situation is permanent. Enjoy the journey.

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6) Practice Acceptance

In order to get to where you are headed , you have to first realize where you are at. You might find yourself in a situation that might appear as if you can’t change. That’s okay. Accept it for what it is at that moment. Instead of wasting your energy worrying about it , why not stay proactive. Focus on the things that you can change and then let go. Find peace in the fact that you did your best and move on. The situation will work itself out in due time. Give it to the universe and don’t look back. Trust…

I am certain that there are other strategies that can be applied to building resilience. I simply focused on the one’s that resonate with me. It is my intention to give you “food for thought”. Despite whether or not you apply these strategies, one fact remains. It is necessary to develop “alligator skin” if  you are going to live life on your own terms. You have the opportunity to take an active role in your own creative process. You might be asking “Why alligator skin?..” Alligator skin is hard to break because it is tough and lasting. Those two words best describe resilience: tough and lasting. You have to be both mentally and emotionally tough not to break under the pressure of your challenges regardless of what they appear to be. Resiliency is necessary for living the authentic life. Image result for practice acceptance

Stay strong. Until next time…

 

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