My scars remind me that I did indeed survive my deepest wounds. That in itself is an accomplishment. And they bring to mind something else, too. They remind me that the damage life has inflicted on me has, in many places, left me stronger and more resilient. What hurt me in the past has actually made me better equipped to face the present.
― Steve Goodier
Resilience!! It’s a word that has become synonymous with strength, power and overcoming. It is often used to refer to how well one comes out on the other side after dealing with a difficult or sometimes challenging ordeal. Whether you come out whole or come out totally in pieces. Did you handle the pressure that tried to crush you or totally lost your cool and blew it all to hell? Being resilient is more than just having a positive outlook on life’s challenges, it’s also about how well you cope with those challenges and the stress that they bring.
I was raised by resilient women through extremely challenging circumstances. My life has always been beautiful but has not always been easy. I wasn’t raised in the lap of luxury but rather raised in strength. So for me, resilience was something I was born with rather than a learned behaviour, however, like many of you, I had to learn how to activate it.
I feel that everyone is born with a certain degree of resilience if a part of our survival mechanism and it’s up to us to activate this mechanism. If it doesn’t come to you right away, life has a way of teaching you this. You can learn to become resilient, whether you’re going through a storm right now, you’ve just come out of one, or need to prepare for any that may come along because trust me, as long as you have breath in your body, life will challenge you! Life will challenge you on levels you never dreamed existed and you have to be ready by…………..
Believing in yourself
Self-Confidence is one of the best techniques for building resilience. How you feel about yourself plays a vital role in how well you handle difficulties in your life, it also plays a crucial part in how well you overcome those difficulties. That negative voice will continue to play in your mind but it’s up to you to shut it down. Playing that sad, pitiful song too long will only make it harder to change to record. Remember whatever life throws at you, if for you to deal with not anyone else. Everyone is going through their own storms, while some may offer a helping hand the ball is in your court, while everyone else is building their resilience through their own battles, you have to build yours.
Developing a Sense of Purpose
This past weekend, I participated in the MacMillian Mighty Hike. When I signed up for this back in February, 13miles didn’t seem like a lot but once I started training, it seemed nearly impossible because as I build up the miles in my training, returning home exhausted but still having to go about my daily life as normal, a few times I wanted to cancel my spot, it was becoming too much to recover from. So in my mind, it was no way I could do 13miles and then come back home to carry on with business as usual. Having done that marathon now, I’m happy I didn’t give up. It has not only cemented my self-confidence. In continuing that challenge, it also rebuilt my resilience, something that seemed to have been expanded beyond my abilities as I’ve been faced with one challenge after the next this past year and a half. First the challenge of becoming a carer and then the challenge of trying to keep the foundation that took me 12yrs nurturing, from crumbling under my feet. Both of which made that 13miles seem like nothing. If I was given the ability for my body, mind and spirit could withstand those challenges, then it would go the distance. Developing the Confidence to cope with these storms while maintaining the ability to deal with them not only compounded my character but also says…….I have the strength to face anything! As the scripture says in Romans 8:28-39 “If God is for us, who can be against us?”
Taking Care of YOU!
While I may spend a lot of time taking care of others. These past few months have thought me to be selfish with my time by learning to nurture ME!! There are no rewards for running yourself on empty, sleepless nights, working late, or skipping a meal will not help you in coping with what is going wrong in your life. It won’t even make you feel better, wallowing in self-pity only pulls you deeper and deeper into despair. Believe me when I say that, stress causes neglect, we neglect our needs, our desires and ourselves. Stress can also kill! So this is where you decide which road to take because this is where life begins to teach you that you have to accept the things you cannot change by changing the things you can. This will perhaps be one of the greatest changes for you if you’re not used to self-nurturing. Learn to listen to your body. Give your body what it needs, fuel, rest, attention and love. In return, it will give you resilience.
Establishing Goals and Taking Some Action
Wishing your problems away won’t make them go away! You have to face the music at some point. Like all things you have to first establish your desired goal or what you want your outcome to look like. Then you have to work toward that goal. Taking control of the situation rather than allowing it to control you will help you cope if things don’t go as planned. You work so hard to hold on to that job and the boss fires you anyway, sometimes you want to hold on to that relationship but it still falls apart. Take a few steps back and rather than be discouraged, remind yourself of how strong you are, and your sense of purpose, that job nor that relationship defines who you are. How well you handle those situations will depend on how quickly you recover is your defining factor. This is how you build resilience.