Throughout our lives we have to face difficult, destabilizing situations, undesirable living conditions or serious traumas. The ability to cope with this type of situation and continue projecting itself in the future despite adversity is what is known as resilience. These small personal crises can be:

  • Evolutionary crisis: these are the changes that occur more expectantly and that happen to most people throughout their lives. Examples of these are the biological changes of adolescence, acquired responsibilities, old age, the loss of loved ones in a natural way, etc.
  • Non-normative crisis: those produced by unexpected events, such as accidents, divorces or separations, job losses, a serious illness. etc.

In these situations you can either stay stagnant and regress or introduce changes in life to continue to grow and mature. The latter is what people with good resilience do. We are not born with a strong mental resistance per se, but develops throughout our lives, we can learn the ability to manage adversities and enhance our level of personal resilience. Every time we rise after a fall, we are improving our resilience.

The basic habits of resilient people.

According to the expert in people development and business leaders  Lolly Daskal who have a high resilience possess 4 basic habits:

1. They are connected with their emotions.

They are people with high emotional intelligence and know how to manage and control their emotions. It is a mistake to suppress the feelings generated by a crisis situation. You need to be aware of what is happening to you and learn to have control of the anxiety that could lead to a crisis situation. In psychology, it is said that a person is resilient when he is able to overcome high stress or traumatic situations without suffering subsequent sequels.

>> Related article: Worries fallacy in anxiety.

2. They do not hear negative voices.

Resilient people are able to overcome negativity and immerse themselves inside their heads to discover what is causing this adverse situation. They are able to transform these negative ideas into positive change intentions. Resilient people are positive and believe in their own strength and skills to overcome problems, look for future solutions.

3. They know how to recover.

The word resilience has its origin in the Latin word resilire, which means to jump again. Therefore, resilience means being able to recover from the adversities of life and jump to new opportunities that life can bring us, with the experience of the previous problems that will help jump better on that springboard towards life. We can all do it, you just have to know how or learn to lean on someone (whether professional or not) as a walking stick. There are many examples of elite athletes who have been able to recover thanks to their mental resistance, as was the case of the former F.C. Barcelona, Eric Abidal, who after passing a cancer returned to professional competition.

4. They do not need to control everything.

People with high resilience do not need to have everything under their control. They adapt to external circumstances, they know that they can only control what is within their control zone (their attitudes, their emotions and their own behaviors). Sometimes the fault is not yours and you can not do anything to remedy it, but you can learn to control the personal situation and your way of dealing with the problem.

Related article: Feeling guilty is not the solution.

Tips to increase resilience.

These habits or behaviors are difficult to learn but it is each person’s personal function to improve their abilities to cope with the stressful events to come. Some tips for enhancing resilience might include:

  • Performing pleasant activities (reading, going to the cinema …)
  • Establish good contact with family and friends.
  • Being in contact with nature, going for a walk in the sun.
  • Practice some sport or physical activity.
  • Performing emotional ventilations adequately (expressing feelings).

On the other hand, the following situations should be avoided:

  • Avoid isolation or social withdrawal.
  • Control the rumination of ideas.
  • Avoid inadequate emotional ventilation (convey feelings to those who do not.
  • Logically, avoid alcohol or drug use to overcome crises. A person with little resilience can be vulnerable to addictions.
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References:

4 habits of the most resilient people

Amparo Osca, Francisco Palací, Juan A. Moriano y Ana Lisbona (2016). Nuevas perspectivas en Psicología de las Organizaciones. Madrid: UNED-Sanz y Torres.

Sobre el autor

Iván Pico

Graduado en Psicología (UNED). Nº Colegiado G-5480. Diplomado en Ciencias Empresariales (USC). Máster en Psicología del Trabajo y las Organizaciones. (INESEM). Máster Universitario Oficial en Orientación Profesional (UNED). Posgrado en Neuromarketing (Universidad Camilo José Cela). Técnico Deportivo Nivel II, fútbol sala (RFEF). Especialista en Psicología Aplicada al Deporte. Etc, etc...
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