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Building Resilience in Uncertain Times

How often have we heard the word resilience in the past year?  Right now as a society are under a lot of unexpected stress from the pandemic. Now we are expected to draw on this elusive thing called resilience.  What is it?  How do we bring it into our lives? 


Psychology Today defines resilience as; “the psychological quality that allows some people to be knocked down by the adversities of life and come back at least as strong as before. Rather than letting difficulties, traumatic events, or failure overcome them and drain their resolve, highly resilient people find a way to change course, emotionally heal, and continue moving toward their goals.”

I had an opportunity to create a presentation on resilience to a group locally. During that session,  I asked the participants to define what resilience meant to them. As a result, many used words like survival, persistence, and putting up a good fight.  Others described it as a bouncing back, a sense of refocusing, patience and adaptation.  It is interesting to see these two perspectives. What is behind the difference in how we relate to resilience?  The short answer is intention.

Woman leaping a gap in the rocks

When we are in a challenging situation and our intention behind resilience is FEAR, we have a fight and survive response.  As a result, we close ourselves off and protective of ourselves and those close to us. We rely on how we have always managed challenging times. 

When our intention within a challenging situation is to approach it with CURIOSITY, then we use the language of opportunity, bouncing back and growth.  Here we tend to be more open and searching for new ways of adjusting to a challenge.  There is more of a sense of choice here.

Some individuals are more naturally resilient even after living extremely challenging lives.  Others can feel trapped in what feels like an unending loop. The same challenges and reactions – kind of like a looping Ground Hog Day.  We are lifted out of this endless loop by building resilience. This is done by shifting your thought patterns or intentions to curiosity and looking for opportunities when you are presented with challenges. 

How to Create Resilience

You can create resilience in your life. Contact Coach Libby for details on upcoming workshops

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