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Bouncing Back: Leaning to be Resilient

April 04, 2020

Bouncing Back: Leaning to be Resilient

Resilience is the ability to adapt well in response to stressful events. In our lives we may experience tragedy, adversity, or real or perceived sources of stress. These events can occur in our family or significant relationships, workplace, health, or financial situations. 

Resilience is not something you either have or don’t have.  While many people are naturally resilient in some ways, it is also a skill that can be developed and even learned. With practice, you can learn behaviors, thoughts, and actions to help you bounce back after trials.

We are all still human no matter how resilient we are. We have emotional and even physical responses to a bad day, but we can train our mind and bodies to bounce back. When individuals find it too difficult to recover from hardship, there is a greater chance of experiencing anxiety, depression, or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). 

Qualities of Resilience

 

What does a resilient person look like?  Typically, a person who adapts well to stressful life experiences is also a good communicator and problem-solver.  He or she is able to identify and control their emotions rather than be mastered by them.  Resilient people have strong self-confidence and self-esteem, believing in their abilities. They are able to set goals, make plans, and follow through with them.  They also don’t hesitate to lean on supportive family or other relationships like friends, support or faith-based groups, or mental health professionals, such as a licensed counselor or therapist. 

 

Building Resilience in Stressful Times

 

Do you consider yourself a person who bounces back from life’s challenges and setbacks?  Someone who lacks resilience may focus on life’s problems and feel like a victim.  Others may turn to unhealthy behaviors or develop a substance abuse problem.  There are genuine ways to improve your reaction to the life’s challenges.  Consider the following ideas as resiliency strategies:

  • Build relationships- Reconnect with friends and family. Join a local support group or community organization.  Check out a faith-based group for support or to aid others.  Helping another person in need helps you find hope in your own stressful times.
  • Be confident in decisions- Make a plan for change and stick with it. Worrying about problems or avoiding them entirely will not change your current reality.  Focus on your abilities, and trust your instincts. 
  • Be goal-focused- Instead of feeling overwhelmed by what you cannot do or control, start with small, attainable goals. These should be measurable, so you can celebrate your accomplishments.
  • Accept what you cannot change- We cannot avoid everything in life. Focus on your reactions to stress and what you can change instead of the inevitable.
  • Focus on the facts- Most of our worries in day-to-day life are about what could happen rather than what we’re actually facing. Sticking to the facts of the situation rather than your fears of what could be can help you focus on finding a solution.
  • Discover what’s new- Every challenge you face is a new opportunity to grow. Do you see any positive traits you’ve acquired as a result or in spite of tough times?  Seeing challenges as an opportunity to improve your life can eliminate stress.
  • Taking care of you- There is no substitute for proper rest, nutrition, exercise, and relaxation techniques. The more healthy energy you have, the more you’ll be able to bounce back.
  • Laugh- Remember to laugh. Resiliency experts have found that the ability to laugh at life helps people cope better through difficult times.  Laughter can even ease physical, emotional, and mental pain.

The Benefits of Growing in Resilience

There are several advantages to building resilience.  One of the greatest benefits is the ability to learn from your experiences and see them as opportunities.  When life is viewed from this perspective it is easier to adapt to new situations and remain hopeful in the face of uncertainty. 

 

There are questions you can ask yourself to find the right strategy for learning to bounce back. Consider the following:

What stressful events have I already experienced? 

Who did I reach out to during these times? 

What did I learn?

What or who gave me hope?

How was I able to overcome? 

 

Finally, be courageous and ask for help when you need it.  There are support groups and programs in your community that can help you you in stress and crisis.  There are countless resources online and in print for bouncing back after adversity.  A licensed mental health professional is also an excellent resource to learn resiliency.  You don’t have to wait for a crisis to practice building resiliency. Start building your bounce-back potential today.

 

Want to talk to a counselor today about this? 

Call Amplified Life at 800-453-7733 and ask for your “Free 15 Minute Phone Consultation" with one of our licensed counselors. We’ll listen, answer questions you may have, and help you plan next steps.

 

Sources:

http://www.apa.org/helpcenter/road-resilience.aspx

http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/adult-health/in-depth/resilience/art-20046311?pg=2

http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/adult-health/in-depth/resilience/art-20046311




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