Change Emotional Intelligence Leadership Teamwork

Building your resilience

Whether you are gearing up for a business transformation in 2013, spending the holiday season with demanding relatives, or even getting ready for the apocalypse at the end of the Mayan calendar on December 21 (*smile*) here are some tips for building your resilience.

Firstly, resilience is the ability to bounce back or recover well from change. I am sure you all know someone who is resilient. They have the ability to carry on regardless of what life throws at them. So what characteristics do these people possess that enables them to do this?

The research around resilience points to four key characteristics:

Confidence – resilient people feel competent, they have effective strategies for coping with stress. They have strong self esteem, they focus on their skills and abilities and they have a learning and growth mindset. When things go wrong they ask themselves, “what did I learn from that”?

Purpose – resilient people have a clear sense of purpose and clear values, they have a strong drive and direction with established goals. They are persistent when setbacks happen and they tend to have well developed problem solving skills. They have a strong sense that their lives add value.

Social Support – resilient people build good relationships with others because they understand that seeking support can help individuals overcome adverse situations, rather than trying to cope on their own. They also provide support to others, but not at the expense of self. They nurture themselves because they understand that if they are not strong they are can’t support others.

Adaptability – resilient people are flexible and adaptable to changing situations which are beyond their control, they choose their battles wisely. They cope well with change because they are optimistic – they see the opportunity rather than the threat.

Building resilience:

  • Work on building  your positive attitudes and emotions
  • Be clear about your sense of purpose
  • Develop coping strategies and use them
  • Establish and nurture a supportive social network
  • Look after yourself – exercise, rest, eat well
  • Create time to do the things you enjoy
  • Recognise and develop your strengths

I’ll finish with a favourite quote of mine from William Somerset Maugham.

 “Life is change. Growth is optional. Choose wisely.”

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