Dr Bill Price outlines some of the characteristics or resilience competencies we need to develop in order to bounce back from adversity. Embrace these intentionally in your life and increase your capacity to never give up.
The 12 resilience competencies work together to help you recover from tough times and are not listed in order of importance. The most important resilience competencies will be the ones you specifically need at the time.
Take time to consider each of these in the context of each setback you’ve experienced and how embracing these could turn situations around. Could they make things better and lead to greater success? Remind yourself, the next time you face a challenge, that you can bounce back stronger.
12 Resilience Competencies
- Willingness: There is a reason some thrive and others survive. Some are willful, while others are willing. Friends of mine went through a major bust up. The only way to reconcile was through a willingness to deal with the issues. Willfulness and willingness are two opposites. Winners operate their lives from a willingness. Ask yourself the question, “How willing am I in every area of my life?”
- Flexibility: Species have survived many, because they’ve evolved or adapted. They were resilient. Our brains have the capacity to scan the horizon with one thing in mind – survival. In the unpredictability of life we constantly have to determine what our response will be, whether Fight or Flight. One of the things resilient people do well, is that they are flexible. Consider how you can stop fighting and flow with what you are facing.
- Commitment to never give up: People who bounce back don’t give up on themselves no matter what situation they are in. The are fully aware of their situation but don’t allow themselves to delve into a place of denial or self pity. Rather they propel themselves into a place where they won’t give up on themselves or give up on life.
- Sense of Hope: If you want to be resilient in life you must embrace a level of optimism that impacts your reality so you can bounce back. You may need to be brutal with the truth every day, living with a sense of hope despite your circumstances. This means taking control of your self talk and instead of sounding off hollow cliches, shift your thinking towards thoughts of encouragement.
- Goal Setting: One of the key resilience competencies is the ability to set realistic goals. Often we are not resilient because we let our goals become faded and meaningless. Our goals need to carry weight in our inner being like a magnetic north as our compass. We must set clear goals that are specific, measurable, time related and reliable. These are linked to a life that is well lived.
- Love: You must learn to love yourself and others. Love is what carries you through tough times. There are so many accounts of how people have bounced back, because they have a feeling of being loved, belonging, a sense of inner connection and community. Love is rooted in a deep place within. As we love ourselves we can love others and our world.
- An ability to hold on: A man once bought a mine with a firm belief that he would strike it rich. After many years of mining with little success he sold the land. Ironically, the new owner drilled three feet further and struck gold. When the previous owner heard this, all he could say was, “I will never ever stop three feet short ever again!” In life, we sometimes need to hold on just that bit longer
- Empathy: This is often necessary for us to get through tough times. The ability to be empathetic, helps us to put things into perspective. Surely we are not the only ones facing challenges. Empathy helps us to shift negative energy away from the issues we face and our focus on ourselves. It enable us to see other people with a fresh set of eyes.
- Wisdom: Wisdom or intelligence are important resilience competencies that help us to win the day. In the ferocity of the battle we need is the ability to think clearly and systemically. Otherwise our brains go overload and focus only on the shadows. We need to be rational, stop blaming others and come up with a plan of corrective action.
- Creativity: Creativity is about finding answers to the core questions in life and then learning to live them rather than finding solutions. It’s about discovering perspective and insight. It’s about thinking beyond where we are now. And thinking from a different dimension and perspective altogether. Sometimes this is more than thinking out of the box. It’s thinking with no box in mind at all. Seeing beyond the now and training the eye to see the bigger picture is what creativity is all about.
- An ability to live in the now: Breathe in and breathe out and live in the moment. You may need to say, “This too shall pass”. Living in the now means we stop the drama, relax in the process, let go and trust in God’s goodness. Consider that our Creator is fully aware of what is going on. Living in the now is trusting in seasons rather than timelines and deadlines and a success formula. It’s about being, learning and being centred.
- An ability to respond authentically: We need to live a life that’s authentic. That means we sometimes need to scream and shout, rant and rave, or cry. This means giving yourself permission to experience your emotions. You are a human being, not Superman and Superwoman with a heart of steel. Sharing our inner feelings, without having to censor them, is sometimes the greatest breakthrough. When we live authentically, connected to our sense of being and our emotions, we live a life that is honourable.
Remind yourself of these 12 resilience competencies next time you face a challenge. Consider how embracing them would change the outcome. Would it be better, more successful? You can become stronger and far more resilient than you ever thought possible.
You can follow Dr Bill Price on LinkedIn and get more of insights into leadership, life and relationships, often from a NeuroScience perspective.