This article targets why resilience is important. We will dive into the meaning of resilience, 5 ways to develop resilience, and other pressing concerns.
What is resilience?
In the book The Resilience Factor, the author Karen Reivich talks about how resilience determines how high we rise above what threatens to wear us down, from battling an illness to bolstering a marriage to carrying on after a national crisis.
Resilience is the ability to successfully cope with stressful events. How a person deals with a crisis, trauma, and adversities in life determines how resilient they are.
Difficult changes in life affect people differently. Some people find it hard to adapt to these traumatic events, and yet others appear to take things in stride.
You may be wondering, what does resilient mean? Resilient people are able to work through their problems with effective communication and coping skills. Resilient people do face problems like less resilient people. It might not look like it. However, they are rich in resilience and weather their storms with strength.
That said, is resilience a skill or a trait? Resilience is definitely a skill that can be learned. Resilience is an important skill that helps people get through a difficult situation while learning new things and experiencing growth.
Now that we have learned what resilient means, remember that resilience can be taught, and people can be trained to be more resilient. Keep reading to find out why resilience is important.
Why resilience is important
Resilience is essential in living a confident and happy life. If that sounds like something you would like to have, keep reading about why resilience is important.
Resilience gives you the strength to deal with problems with a clear mind
Resilient people adapt successfully to the negative effects of a difficult situation. They are strong enough to fight both internal and external negativity on their own. that they can efficiently solve problems and make decisions.
On the contrary, people who are not resistant are not emotionally strong and do not have containment. Containment is an aspect of resilience that describes how an individual deals with troubling thoughts, feelings, and behavior that arises from stressful situations.
Resilience helps you cope with difficult events in your life
Many people will break down and develop depression when they experience stressful situations in their lives. While depression is not a measure of strength, resilient people find ways to deal with it in healthier ways.
They understand that bad things happen to everyone. Additionally, they don’t have a victim mentality that makes most people feel like everyone is out to get them.
Think about some of the strongest people in your life. The ones who seemed to pull through despite the worst situations. They somehow managed to show an extraordinary amount of strength in the face of adversity.
These are people who were resilient enough to cope with whatever life threw at them.
Resilience allows you to provide support to people around you who need it
Resilient people are the best at providing support, even when they are in the same situation as everyone else. These are people who step up and take the role of supporting and caring for their fellow humans who need extra help.
Think of family members who were strong and level-headed despite the difficulty of a situation, for example, the death of a loved one. These individuals might have taken the role of providing emotional support and care.
Additionally, emotional resilience is also common in first respondent jobs, for example, police and emergency healthcare workers. They detach themselves from their feelings of fear to administer support to the people who need it. Remember that resilience is a skill that can be learned, and you can learn it too.
Now that we have looked at why resilience is important, let’s look at how to tell if you are resilient.
How to tell if you are resilient
We have covered what resilience is and why it is important. So, how can you tell if someone is resilient?
According to Ann Masten, a professor at the Institute of Child Development at the University of Minnesota, resilience is when you view:
- Good outcomes regardless of high-risk status
- Constant competence under stress
- Recovery from trauma
What does resilient mean? If you are an overall positive person, chances are you are resilient as well. Positive people tend to expect good things to happen, no matter how bad the situation may be.
On the other hand, some people will default to negativity. They feel like only bad things will happen to them. This is an example of a cognitive distortion called mental filtering.
Mental filtering can lead to stress and anxiety because all you do is discount the positives as one-time events and negatives as the way of your life. Even though you might have discovered a pattern of negativity in your life, it does not mean that your life is negative. You need to learn to see the positivity in your life. That is when you can be resilient.
Now that we have looked at why resilience is important and how to tell if you are resilient, we can move on to what influences resilience in people.
Factors that influence resilience in a person
There are quite a few factors that ensure a person ends up with resilience in their personality. Some of them are learned in childhood, but that doesn’t mean you are doomed if you didn’t learn to be resilient in your early years. You can always learn to be resilient. That said, here are factors that influence resilience in a person.
Strong childhood upbringing
Like almost all coping skills, resilience is something that can be cultivated during childhood. According to studies, parents can and do influence their child. A child’s genetic makeup influences their personality and behaviors. However, children learn by looking up to their parents. This means that positive and encouraging parents will most likely rear resilient children.
Possess an internal locus of control
Resilient people possess an internal locus of control. These people believe they have control over what happens in their lives. This is on the opposite side of people who believe that their lives are controlled by external events that they have no control over.
By possessing an internal locus of control, you understand that you are in charge of taking care of your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Otherwise, you will allow yourself to make decisions based on what life throws at you.
Having a positive mindset is a clear indicator that you are resilient. People with positive mindsets tend to expect good outcomes from negative situations. This helps them to avoid worrying and stress. Negative situations can also lead to bigger issues like depression and anxiety disorder. When you look at everything in your life in an encouraging light, you begin to be resilient. You understand that worrying causes you added stress when you can adopt a positive approach to everything in life.
The ability to help others
You are resilient if you can help others in their time of need. Putting aside negative emotions, for instance, sadness to function efficiently in stressful situations is a characteristic of resilience. Learning to provide support despite your own sadness will help you be more resilient.
Resilient people are good communicators. They don’t jump to conclusions because they will always assess all the facts before proceeding. Communication will solve a lot of pain and suffering. If you assume that your boss won’t raise your salary and trudge through your working days with loathing, you are not resilient. A resilient person will clearly communicate their needs instead of suffering in ignorance.
Good coping skills
Another factor influencing resilience in people is good coping skills. Coping skills are activities that can change your state of mind from stressful and wondering to calm and composed.
Many people rely on addictions to cope with difficult situations in their lives. However, resilient people will resort to healthier options to deal with their emotions. Examples of good coping activities include exercise, journaling, and hobbies like crafts. These help you to direct your energy to healthy and productive activities.
Absence of cognitive distortions
When people do not have cognitive distortions, they are more likely to be resilient. What are cognitive distortions? These are habitual ways of thinking that are negative and inaccurate.
Some examples include mental filtering, overgeneralization, and catastrophizing. They can manifest in thoughts like, “I always get the worst end of the stick” or “Nothing ever works out for me.” Negative distortions can be worked through individually by recognizing them, but therapy will help immensely.
Types of resilience
While most of the time, resilience will refer to the resilience of the mind, there are also other types. Let’s take a look.
What is physical resilience?
Physical resilience is the body’s ability to cope with physical challenges by maintaining stamina and recovering efficiently. Think about the last time you were bedridden. Your body managed to bounce back from it. Our bodies are designed to withstand physical challenges and learn to function normally again. Many people learn to walk after life-changing car accidents.
In his book The Art of Resilience, Ross Edgley talks about how he managed to overcome seemingly insurmountable pain, hardship and adversity. He was first person in history to swim all the way round Great Britain This is an example of physical resilience.
What is mental resilience?
Mental resilience is the ability to maintain level-headed during challenging situations. It involves remaining calm and focused during a crisis, thinking flexibly, and coming up with a step-by-step plan to achieve a goal. Mentally resilient people can compartmentalize their emotions to process at another time. Compartmentalization is the ability to separate thoughts and feelings from the current reality so that they can be dealt with later.
What is emotional resilience?
Emotional resilience is one of the most essential types of resilience in humans. Emotionally resilient people are positive in the face of adversity. They understand that bad things happen to everyone. Emotional resilience is a sign of emotional intelligence. This is something that a lot of people lack. They find it hard to cope with difficult events in their lives. However, emotionally resilient people find the good in every situation. The book
What is social resilience?
Social resilience can also be called community resilience. It is the ability for people in communities to stick together and offer support despite hardships. Consider how people team up to provide support to their fellow humans after natural disasters like earthquakes or hurricanes. Additionally, social resilience is portrayed by making friends, learning to work with new people, and maintaining relationships with family members.
Those are the four types of resilience. Read on to find out how you can develop resilience.
5 Ways to develop resilience
Resilience is a skill that can be developed by anyone, regardless of their age. Let’s find out how you can improve your resilience.
Adopt a positive mindset
One of the best ways to develop your resilience is to start being more positive. Many people cringe when they hear “be positive,” but positivity is a powerful tool for taking control of your life and reaching your goals. Positivity helps you to possess an internal locus of control and banish negative thoughts that bring you down. Furthermore, positivity ensures that you won’t have a victim mentality where you think everyone is out to get you.
Learn to communicate effectively
Communication can solve many problems. Instead of jumping to conclusions, consider getting your facts straight. Our voices are one of the most powerful tools to help us reach our goals. Talk to people and understand their perspectives. We cannot read other’s minds, despite what they have proved to us in the past. Communicating effectively is a sign of resilient people.
Learn better coping skills
Resilient people have good coping skills. They understand the need for healthy activities that will help them to process negative feelings. They choose activities that bring them joy and improve their moods. And they stay away from harmful addictions. Some people use their addictions to cope with stressful events in their lives. However, emotionally resilient people know how to deal with negative emotions.
People who lack resilience hate change. They find it hard to adapt to new environments. On the other hand, resilient people will accept change and see the best in it. Change is a part of life. Accepting that your life is no longer the same means that you will adjust your goals and find new goals to obtain. Resilience allows you to focus on your new circumstances and how you can make the best of them.
Get out of your comfort zone
Another way to develop resilience is to get out of your comfort zone. You cannot learn new things if you stay in a safe bubble. Getting outside, meeting new people, and confronting problems head-on will allow you to develop resilience. Resilience can be learned through practice. That means you need to start confronting your problems so that you can be more resilient in troubling times.
What are the 7 C’s of resilience?
The 7 C’s model of resilience was developed by Dr Ken Ginsburg, who is a pediatrician at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. It helps kids and teens to learn how to be happier and more resilient. Let’s take a look at the 7 C’s of resilience.
First, we have competence. Competence allows individuals to know how to deal with stressful situations effectively. Competence is built by equipping kids with skills that help them trust their judgement and make responsible choices.
According to Dr Ginsburg, confidence is derived from competence. Learning to make the right choices and judgements allows people to be more confident in themselves, thus becoming more resilient in life.
Connection helps with being more socially resilient. Having good relationships with family members and friends ensures a sense of security that contributes to building resilience.
Character involves having a good moral sense that dictates wrong and right. When you know you have a good sense of character, you are more inclined to act resilient.
Contributing to your community builds motivation. Having a purpose in society can motivate you to have more confidence, and therefore, more resilience.
Coping skills are important for building resilience. By coping using healthy activities, individuals improve their resilience to difficult situations.
Finally, in the 7 C’s model of resilience is control. People benefit better from adopting an internal locus of control. When you believe you control your life, you act as a problem solver instead of a victim and blamer.
In this article, we have taken a look at what resilient means, why it is important, types, how to develop resilience, and the 7 C’s of resilience. Resilience is an essential skill in the world today. People can cope with stressful situations and grow through them.