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Bouncing back

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Author: Will Mbanga, Posted: Wednesday, 25th May 2022, 09:00

As human beings, each of us will be faced with hardship, challenges and tragedy in our lives – our ability to deal with these mostly internally-experienced traumas is largely dependent on our resilience.

Resilience is essentially an individual’s ability to ‘bounce back’ from failure, disappointment or bereavement. You see, life is a contact sport and while some of the damage we take is physical, much of it is mental-emotional and this damage is what is of most concern.

When preparing for high level sport or physical activity, your preparation is key to enabling you to cope with the physiological and mental-emotional demands imposed; the same approach should be carried into your life as far as your mental health is concerned.

We’ve all been there – life is going swimmingly, not a care in the world (relatively speaking, of course!) and then, out of nowhere, WHAM! Something bad happens – life kicks you in the head and crushes your dreams or your heart.

Recovering from a major setback is a challenge

This is nothing new – fate has been kicking butts and taking names for thousands of years. What has changed, however, is our ability to react to this and either mount up our damage control systems, or set things right. Irrespective of whether you are at fault or not, bouncing back from a major setback is a huge challenge.

This brings us to that catch-all word that so many coaches and motivational speakers use – resilience. Conventional wisdom suggests that resilience is a quality that you can switch on or off as needed. What many of us don’t realise is that it is a skill and as such, can be developed through focused, intentional practice.

There are many brilliant tools you can use to build your resilience, and enable you to assess how well you’re managing challenges and any adversity you’re going through. You don’t need to engage in an expensive diagnostic tool to help you bounce back, but there is much to be gained from applying basic principles to your daily life.
Believe in your abilities and have confidence that you can achieve your goals.

Develop a social network of people you can confide in and who can support you in tough times.

Be flexible and embrace change – life isn’t easy but our ability to adapt and not be too rigid can help us to respond better to challenging situations.

Take action and don’t stick your head in the sand. The longer you wait to start working on resolving an issue, the more stressful the crisis may become.
These are just a few ways in which you can enhance your resilience, but all of these tech-niques take time. You won’t master them overnight, but taking small, positive steps will set you on the right path.

Focus on what you can control

Managing emotional energy is an essential part of being resilient, as it allows you to stop focusing on negative, unhelpful thoughts, while building positive thoughts and maintaining focus on things you can control.

As you build your resilience plan, think carefully about the impact you want from using this plan and remember, you might not get the results you want straight away. Be confident and be disciplined in sticking to your routine.

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