Building resilience is one of the things that 2020 taught me. Many people went through challenging situations, and I know how hard it could be. In this post, I will share the 3 rules for building resilience. These 3 rules are how I go through challenging events, and you can also practice it to become more resilient.
In the post How Counselling Helped Me Build Resilience, I explained what resilience means and talked about resilience characteristics. This post discusses how you can build flexibility, and as a bonus, I describe the 3 secrets of resilient people.
How do you build resilience?
When going through difficult moments, there’s going to be a time when your mind will tell you to get over it. However, you have your emotions that will try to take over. Your emotions will act as if it’s the end of the world, and you might cry, drink or do things that are destructive to your body.
There’s a 3 rule that you can follow whenever you go through difficult situations. Whenever you practice these 3 rules, you’ll find it easier to bounce back.
Rule #1 for building resilience: Give yourself 3 days to be emotional.
The amount of time that you can take to bounce back might be longer than you expected. We all know that time passes by quickly, and with time comes healing; however, you don’t know how long this can take.
Therefore, I suggest that you take 3 days where you allow your emotions to take control. In those 3 days, you let yourself cry if you feel like crying, you let yourself do whatever your feelings want you to do. Just make sure that you’re not hurting yourself.
The best way to go through these 3 days is when you can share your feelings with someone that you trust. Allow yourself to pour everything out to the other person, and let them listen to you. If they have any advice for you, pay attention to them and consider it.
Besides talking to someone you trust, you can also find a way to let it all out by talking to yourself. You can record a voice message or video to yourself, or write a letter to yourself. You can say anything that your heart has been carrying.
I suggest that you become real with your own feelings. Even if you want to curse yourself out, you can do it. When I do that, I find myself babying myself. Saying that it’s okay, we’re all humans, and we make mistakes.
Again, you’re allowing yourself to feel emotional, listen to your feelings and take the time to digest them. If 3 days isn’t enough, that’s okay, but don’t go longer than a week. The longer you let your feelings control you, the higher chances you will overthink or become destructive.
Rule #2 for building resilience: Analyze your situation
After you allowed yourself to be vulnerable to someone you trust or talk to yourself and let yourself cry. Now it’s the time to stand up and tell your emotions that it’s enough. We’re not going to cry over the past because we don’t have the power over it. However, we have control over the present moment.
What you need to do, on the 4th day is to accept what happened. Know that everything in life happens for a reason, and most of them are lessons and tests. I can’t confirm if you passed the test or not. However, to make sure that you do is going to depend on your ability to bounce back.
This is where you challenge your growth mentality. We’re all trying to figure out life, and when you fail at a test, you won’t learn anything if you decide to give up. The good habit of having is to look at the trial, analyze your mistakes and study them.
When you analyze your situation, you must accept that we all make mistakes and be better. Depending on your difficult situation, you will have to recognize your own errors and practice every day to become a better person. Teach yourself the things that you missed.
It’s necessary to take the time and analyze your past. I believe that the reason why the past exists is to teach us a lesson. History is our greatest teacher, that’s why it’s essential to look at your past.
Rule #3 for building resilience: Practice the best way to go through your difficult situation.
Now, the timeframe from the 3 days of being emotional to this can take years or months. Building resilience isn’t comfortable; it’s hard to battle against your emotions and negative thoughts.
The reality is you will have to take what you learned from that bad experience and move forward. The best thing about this is, if you analyzed your situation, you would most likely be successful as you grow. You will accept the negative experiences and own it.
What I mean by being successful is you will most likely not repeat the same mistakes. You will control your emotions, and you will welcome challenges. Some people are afraid to do the same event that made them fail. However, you can only test if you learned anything from that experience by doing it again.
Here, I’m talking about events that you can control. If it’s something that you can’t control, like an accident, your way of analyzing the situation will be more in your mindset. You have to be fair to yourself and be patient.
In either case, you can ask yourself questions before taking action. Every time you want to do something, ask yourself if it’s right for you. The best question to ask yourself is, “Is this action that I’m about to take is going to hurt me or heal me?”
Another tip that works well for me is affirmations. The best ones are the “I am” and “I refuse to.” Here’s a shortlist for you. I encourage you to create your own affirmations based on your situation.
“I am,” affirmations:
- I am resilient
- I am getting better
- I am going to love today
- I am loving
- I am evolving
“I refuse” affirmations:
- I refuse to be broke
- I refuse to settle for less
- I refuse to go back to my old ways
- I refuse to let people bring me down
- I refuse to drink
One last thing, to finish on resilience
Again, building resilience isn’t easy. It’s actually one of the hardest things to do in life. However, once you’re doing it and experienced it, you become a pro. It takes practice and patience to build resilience.
There’s going to be times where everything is falling apart. You must know that everyone is going through hard times (don’t believe social media). So taking care of yourself should be a priority. The best thing to do is to deal with it and not ignore it.
You deal with difficult situations by feeling your emotions, analyzing your situation and creating a habit to make the right decisions by asking the right questions. This is how you build resilience.
After watching, Resilient expert Lucy Hone’s Ted Talk, I understood the following about resilient people. Resilient people have these 3 qualities. They know that suffering is part of every human existence. They realistically focus on what they can change. They know their strengths and weaknesses. Last, they know that doubts overwhelm you, but they don’t let it swallow them.
I know that you, too, can be resilient. However, it takes many experiences, a series of failures to be able to bounce back. Therefore be aware that it’s hard and know that difficult moments will happen in your life. When it does, remember to be kind to yourself.
All You Need is Faith 🙂