One of the new hot topics is resilience, and I love it. I am not sure why it rings so strongly for me other than I think I am quite resilient although until now I certainly have not thought of it much. I have mostly heard it in reference to the Farm to Fork movement, Sustainability and Resilience, but I think there is more about resilience to look at.
the ability of a substance or object to spring back into shape; elasticity.
“nylon is excellent in wearability and resilience”
the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness.
“the often remarkable resilience of so many British institutions”
Now I am not an expert about this Resilience Movement, but as I think about it this is what so many extraordinary people are, they are resilient. They have the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties, a toughness that is within.
We have all heard successful people talk about failure, they say “Fail fast and fail often.” It is in the failures in which we gain are capacity for resilience, to recover quickly, or is it? Everyone knows of Michael Jordan and his failure in missed baskets, and Abraham Lincoln’s list of failures, and even JK Rowlings (here is a link for these if you like to see more http://bit.ly/1WlFvtN). So my inquiry into this resilience is, “Does failure breed resilience, or must you already be resilient to powerfully deal with failure?” So was Michael Jordan naturally resilient or was resilience something that was developed over time and through the difficulties that he came across.
I think as we look to the future that we create for ourselves, it is something to inquire into for ourselves. How do you deal with failure? Do you go down the rabbit hole? Or, do you recover quickly and move on? Are there some failures that you are more resilient about? Or, do you relate to every failure the same?
As I have been doing some research myself on this topic I discovered that difficulties are not just failures. I thought, wow how much weight I must put on failure that I did not even consider other types of difficulties that many people endure every day. Loss of a loved one, loss of a home, a job, sickness, and many other difficulties and sometimes tragedies that are quite prevalent now with all the fires that we have just endured here in California. So now that I have stepped beyond my little bubble of what difficulties really are, I can see the resilience that we human beings have.
So I think that resilience in inherent in each of us, AND it must be nurtured to bloom to its fullest potential. So we do not have to wait until tragedy strikes to nurture the capacity to bounce back quickly. So what must you do to nurture your own resiliency?
First, acknowledging that you are resilient. When you look back in your life, begin to see the times when you have bounced back. Whether you had a tragedy, or you had a concern that paralyzed you, or you got stuck and worked your way through it. Acknowledging that you came through that, you worked through it, you did what you needed to do to get to the other side, is resilience, you have demonstrated resilience, acknowledge it, pat yourself on the back.
Second, practice it. To be someone who masters anything in life takes practice. So creating a practice to expand your capacity to recover from difficulties will give you the muscle to quickly bring forth your resilience in times of difficulty. A practice can be anything that empowers you, but one idea would be to at the end of each day to reflect on your day at where you demonstrated resiliency OR where you missed the mark and gave in to the difficulty. Take a moment to reflect acknowledge what worked and/or what did not work.
Bringing an awareness to your own resilience will allow for you to build on and strengthen your own super power of resiliency, no matter how dormant it has become, it is within you. What you think about you bring about! So create your practice and have fun with it. You are a powerful being, who is meant to live a life of health, happiness and success.