Psychologists define resilience as the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats, or significant sources of stress — such as family and relationship issues, serious health problems, workplace and financial stressors, natural disasters (like epidemics), and more.
During a crisis, there is a sense of urgency to get ourselves to safety. Times can be such that we need to respond even before we fully understand the threat.
Will we ever forget the 2020 toilet paper shortage!
Even though you have already been resilient throughout life you may not have consciously acknowledged it as the strength that it is. And there lies the answer of how to call upon resilience when the need arrives! You start from a place of self-awareness.
The time you climbed the mountain, ran a marathon, cared for a crying baby for months on end, turned your life around!
Imagine the power and energy that can be yours when applying consciousness to your innate ability to be resilient. When you become conscious of your skills and abilities, you can transmute your fears by strategically making adjustments and moving forward. You can pivot direction and still be productive. Many times, even more productive as a change in direction can come with an acute focus.
We pivoted quickly to work from home. To wearing a mask. Social distancing. Walking the wrong way down the aisle of your local grocery store (accidentally) and living to tell the tale. (Or was that just me?) Homeschooling, and so much more.
While being resilient does not solve problems, it does help us to face situations that must be faced. It allows us to keep our wits about us (or find them faster) and adapt to any new and sometimes even frightening situations.
Here’s a fairly relevant example. If a high schooler misses their graduation because of a life-altering event, their world can be rocked. A lifetime of expectations go out the window. This is a big deal, perhaps a monumental deal! They can literally feel lost unless/until they’ve developed the power of resilience and consciously choose to use it—or have someone in their life who can help them find that resilience.
It is during tough times, not easy times, that we learn how to be resilient. If this door has closed, we can ask: What door can I open now? What can I make happen? Who can I partner or collaborate with to make things better? How do I want to show up? What am I made of—what is my mettle?
We can’t erase sadness, worry, or fear. It can’t be done. They are an integral part of the human experience. Each feeling has its own unique lesson to teach us about resilience, about showing up for ourselves.
There will always be challenging times that require resilience. By making a conscious effort to develop it, we will find it to be more easily accessible when we need it the most.