What is resilience and how do you build resiliency? By definition, it is “the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness.”

Why is resilience such an important quality regardless of who you are and what you do? Yea, not quitting easily and being tough is great, but it doesn’t do justice to what the word really means. Having the power to be able to roll with the punches and keep moving forward is an art. Life is beautiful, but it’s not always easy. You are going to fail in life, over and over and over again. I don’t want to sound dispirited but it’s the truth, oftentimes in my experience, I’ve noticed that many of the respected and successful people in their fields aren’t always the most naturally gifted at the task at hand. So by that standard, those same successful people being viewed at face value by a stranger may believe that they just happened to fall into that success, that they were born into it, or maybe even just lucky. But in reality, for the most part, they were just people who chose to look at their failures as a learning experience as opposed to a final outcome. When they were faced with adversity, they didn’t run from it, they stood strong and battled through. So now that we know what resiliency is and why it’s so important to build in oneself, let’s dive down the rabbit hole and break down a few battle-tested tips to get us headstrong and ready to roll with the punches life throws at us and even throw a few back.

Perspective

We’ve all heard the proverbial phrase, “Is the glass half full or half empty?” Typically it’s used as a rhetorical question, but truthfully your perspective of how you see that “glass” is massively important. If you’re looking to build resiliency you need to be optimistic. Now keep in mind when I say optimistic, I am not saying you need to live in fantasy land, of course, you need to be realistic when it comes to seeing things from a “glass half full” perspective. But if you are always seeing things as a pessimist, it will be extremely difficult to battle back and recover from failures, difficulties & obstacles that will without a doubt come about on your journey. You need to find a way to turn those negatives into positives, use failures and obstacles as learning experiences and opportunities to grow and challenge yourself. The human mind is so much more powerful than we give it credit for, the way we choose to see the situations that surround us every day will either make or break us. Be flexible with your mind, the world isn’t out to get us, but it equally doesn’t revolve around us as individuals. Grow every single day, from every situation, positive or negative it doesn’t matter. With a “glass half full” perspective you will learn from both.

Face your fears

Life can be scary, it’s not always easy to put one foot in front of the other and keep moving forward. I had a conversation with a buddy of mine who also happens to be a long-time member at my gym. He has these great goals that he wants to achieve and they are perfect for the type of person he is. He has been delaying the start of these goals and expressed to me that he thinks he is too old and it’s too late to pursue them. That it will be a lengthy process and take a lot of time and energy that he’s a little afraid to 100% commit to something that has no guarantees of working out. Failure is one of the scariest things to come face to face with, no one wants to think of themselves as a failure. But what is far scarier than any failure you will ever come across is the regret of not acting on your passions. EVERYONE owes it to themselves to let their inner creative out and fuel the passion that lives inside of them. What is worse, failing at building your passion project or neglecting yourself the chance to live out your dream? If you’re sitting there thinking “I’m 30 years old, it’s too late for me to start working towards getting my Doctorate. It will take me 4 years more years before I even get it .” I want you to think about it like this, in 4 years you’re going to be 34 years old either way, would you rather be 34 years old with a Doctorate or 34 years old in the same place you’re in now scared to take the first step? And that goes for any goal you may have, it’s never too late. Quit making excuses and psyching yourself out and take the leap already. When your old and gray regrets you have will eat you alive, right now is always the best time to get started. Tomorrow is simply a lie you tell yourself, tomorrow never comes.

Grit

Grit is one of the best characteristics you can give a person. Grit and resilience go hand in hand, it’s hard to have one without the other. If you have grit you have determination, passion, and perseverance for long-term meaningful goals. Winston Churchill once said, “If you’re going through hell, keep going.” In order to build the resilience you have to be gritty, you have to be able to take a beating once in a while (not literally hopefully) withstand it and have the heart and passion to not retreat but rather press on towards the goals that mean the most to you. It’s not always fun but if you can endure it, it will always be worth it. Quitting is easy, if you’re looking to become tougher and more resilient you aren’t looking for easy.

These 3 tips are extremely important in acquiring the resilience that you’re chasing. This world is big and full of both good and bad, to navigate it we all need to be tougher. Find your inner purpose, change your perspective, be optimistic and growth-focused. Don’t be afraid to face your fears, regret to chase your passion is far scarier than anything else you’re hiding from. Be gritty. When the going gets tough, the tough get going. Get your hands dirty, when you come across a little resistance that just means you’re getting closer, push harder.

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