8 Ways to Develop Resilience in Your Life: Learn to Face Adversity

· July 19, 2017
Resilience is the ability to be as flexible as bamboo in a storm of adversity. It bends, but it doesn't break. It just becomes stronger.

The term resilience has a very interesting etymological root: it comes from the Latin participle resiliens. This means to go backward, jump back, to stick out, or bounce.

At the same time, this word has a base in the physical world. It describes the materials that have the natural property to bend without breaking. Think of a bow, for instance. You have to bend it to shoot an arrow, but it returns to its previous state very quickly.

However, the word resilience also has an aspect that can inspire your day-to-day life.

The concept of resilience was popularized by the neurologist, ethologist, and psychoanalyst Boris Cyrulnik. He is especially known for his French work Les Vilains Petits Canards (The Ugly Little Ducks).

This is an essential strategy that goes beyond simple personal growth. This is a life tool. It’s a concept that should lift you up in every moment of weakness, sadness, and when you face all kinds of adversity.

In this article, we’ll give you 8 keys so you can start to deepen and strengthen this dimension. We all have it; you only have to wake it up and make it stronger!

 1. Feel your emotions

Don’t stop your fear or frustration. Don’t hide your sadness or your anger. Channel all of these emotions. Recognize them and then understand them.

This is a way to find a middle ground so you don’t let them control you. Meanwhile, you also aren’t forced to hide them.

To know yourself and to increase your day to day resiliency, it’s necessary to become a good manager of your vast – and sometimes complex – universe.

2. Remember the moment in your past when you faced a challenge

During the course of life, everyone is a survivor of adversity. Everyone has come out triumphant after a challenge. It could have been a complex situation, a lie, a crossroad, abandonment, a disease, or a setback. We all face challenges, often without us even knowing it.

An inspiring strength flows from inside of us all. This makes difficult things easy. It also gives you personal resources that you maybe didn’t know that you had.

Keep these moments of triumph in your past in mind. They are your inspiration for the here and now.

3. Go for a walk every day

This might seem too easy. Actually, it’s possible that some don’t understand what relationship it has with resiliency.

Gentle but constant exercise provides you with good changes in your brain. It frees endorphins. These hormones make you calm and they help you to get a relative view of reality. They also help to oxygenate your brain and reduce the level of cortisol (the stress hormone) in your blood.

This internal balance improves your emotions. Plus, it lets you learn to be more resistant and stronger at the same time.

4. Encourage good relationships

Having someone you can talk to is important. We all need someone that we trust and we can open our heart to. It’s important to have someone we know understands and respects us. This is without a doubt a helpful magic for your day to day life.

This daily emotional support is a root of power that also feeds your ability to be resilient.

5. Take time for yourself

Enjoying a day to yourself, or a couple of hours in your day where you can connect with yourself, is important. You can connect with your thoughts and needs. This is another basic strategy to manage your inner world.

Personal and private spaces and those nooks that only belong to you are spoonfuls of health you should feed yourself regularly.

6. Do things that are significant to you

There are times that, when we don’t think right, the simple fact of doing something you like helps us. If there’s something you identify with or that defines you, this is a way to channel stress. Plus, it’s also a way to use resilience to build you up.

If you like your work or if you have very relevant passion, it’s important to turn to it during those times when you feel lost under the shadow of depression.

As odd as it seems, sometimes routines can act as vital sign monitors. They push you to keep moving forward.

7. Write in a diary

In our site, we’ve often talked some about the benefits of keeping a daily journal.

This is very therapeutic. It’s a good way to let out your emotions, structure your ideas, project ideas, make decisions, clear your mind, reflect, and find the intimacy you need with yourself.

8. Feel the earth beneath your feet

This metaphorical image of “having your feet on the ground” really gives you a list of basic ideas you can think about:

  • You have roots that you must feed. They allow you to be strong again. They include your self-esteem, your personal history, and the people that love you.
  • You need to maintain a balance all the time. You should be strong but flexible like bamboo. Stay in touch with what feeds and inspires you. Keep hold of the emotional undercurrent that inspires and comforts you.
  • You area part of everything. You are like a tree in this complex environment. And, like a tree, your roots make you stronger in storms.