Recently, I shared that I lost my resiliency during some large life challenges. It got me to thinking:

How do I develop resiliency and maintain it, especially when the going gets tough?

Let’s start by defining resiliency.  According to the Al Siebert Resiliency Center, resiliency is the capacity to recover from the difficulties, disruptive change and challenges that life throws at us and, ideally, to recover from them as quickly as possible.

If you are living life full on, not hiding out on the sideline, then you have had your fair share of “growth opportunities” that would benefit from developing resiliency.

For those of you who have been around the block a time or two with me, you know I always start with mindset.

 

What we tell ourselves in the tough moments makes the difference between overcoming or succumbing.

We have to believe something is possible before we can achieve it.  While this applies to going after a dream or goal, it also applies to believing we can succeed when the cards seem to be stacked against us.

When we build and maintain a supportive mindset, it impacts how we think about life. These thoughts then directly influence our actions and responses to life’s challenges. Being in a constant practice of engaging in empowering, positive self-talk during the good times helps create a solid practice to lean on during the challenging times.

If you’re ready to take your mindset to a new empowered level, check out my recent blog post: 3 Steps to Create an Empowered Mindset.

But what do we do when our mindset doesn’t want to cooperate and our resilience is tanking? I’m glad you asked!

Two hands holding a heart with the word "Support" in the center - a key to develop resiliency

The next step to develop resiliency is cultivating a top-notch support system.

 

Surround yourself with quality people you can reach out to when you need support and then – reach out. Ask for the help you need when you need it. Let people help you just as you would be willing to help them if they came to you and asked for it.

Don’t get caught up on pride, or playing it tough or being concerned you’ll be perceived as weak. We all need help from time to time.

The third step to develop resiliency is to process your emotions rather than ignore them.

 

Give yourself permission to feel the emotions you are experiencing as you navigate life’s challenges.

Honor them, process them and learn from them. Working through them soothes your system and helps restore balance to tap into resiliency.

What we resist persists. Emotions are powerful – don’t stuff them away or ignore them. If you do, they’ll return when you least expect them to hijack you (generally in the most inopportune moments).

If you want to develop resiliency, create a Badass Inventory and capture your superpowers, gifts, talents and awesome abilities.

The fourth step to develop resiliency is a fun one: create your Badass Inventory!

 

A Badass Inventory is a list of your amazing characteristics, your successes, your accomplishments, your uniqueness, your superpowers – those characteristics the people around you celebrate and appreciate.

Keep your Badass Inventory handy for those moments when you need the reminders of how extraordinary you are. And – don’t stop with just a list!

Get creative with your Badass Inventory by creating a:

• collage of words, statements and images that represent them,
• story about yourself that incorporates the list,
• handwritten message to yourself listing them out and singing your praises,
• song with inventory-filled lyrics,
• video of you sharing your amazing attributes that you can play in a red hot moment,
• compilation of sticky notes and place them all over your house (mirror, refrigerator, night stand, tv remote, light switch), office (computer monitor, printer, desk, line of sight locations), vehicle (dashboard, arm rest, visor) – any prominent spot to keep your brilliance in front of you.

A collection of gratitude journal, cup of tea and flowers

Finally, a “must-have” on the resiliency list – Create an Empowerment Kit

 

I’ve previously shared this one with all of you and it received rave reviews! My coaching clients also love this exercise and have consistently attested to the benefit of having one on hand for those moments it’s most needed.

Here’s a pro tip as you develop resiliency: create an Empowerment Kit BEFORE you need it and ideally design it when you are feeling in your power, centered and connected to your amazing life. Fill the kit with those items and activities that nourish, empower, delight, support and help you feel resilient.

Empowerment Kit suggestions include:

• aromatherapy/essential oils, candles,
• inspiring playlists and upbeat music,
• your favorite movement (dance, exercise classes/routines, walk in nature, yoga, walk your dog),
• affirmation cards,
• inspiring or motivational YouTube Videos, books, audios, blog posts
• guided meditation,
• inspiring quotes,
• list of trusted people to call (step 2 above),
• journal (keep a list of helpful journal prompts),
• visualize your desired outcome,
• mani/pedi,
• massage,
• play in art,
• wear empowering clothes or jewelry, and
• anything else that moves you in a positive, empowered direction.

The ability to develop resiliency is a lifelong process. I was reminded today that we go through many transformations over our lifetime. With each level of growth, we need new tools to navigate our evolving life experiences. Challenge yourself to learn, grow and develop wisdom along with your resiliency.

Do you have a resiliency practice that keeps you in your power? Share in a comment below – I’d love to add it to my list!

Joan Jakel

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