Building your resilience








The majority of us have one challenge or another. Whether it is a small or life changing challenge, it matters and is real to us.  From the outside it may appear some have little to worry about or fear whilst the challenges of others are far more visible. As we go through life our experiences affect us. We can either build up a stronger resilience to our challenges or become defeated by them.  In my opinion neither make us a stronger or weaker person; it is simply the way in which we deal with life in general.

Very few people addicted to drugs or alcohol do so just for the fun of it. There are deep rooted issues that need to be addressed and in order to cope the person has turned to a vice. Though damaging this somehow brings respite from their challenges. It allows a level of escapism for those who want to forget the situations they find themselves in.  Whenever I see a homeless person (sadly, numbers are rapidly increasing in London), I wonder what their story is. What they endured and why they ended up on the streets.

Life can be difficult and unfortunately not all of us possess the necessary grounding, skills and fight to deal with whatever is thrown at us.  I have often heard the saying “Can life get any worse?” Yes, it probably can.

As a teenager and young adult I perceived myself to be weak with very little ‘fight’ in me. I had no quick comebacks when negative words were spoken over me. I thought about situations long after they had happened and fantasised about what I would have liked to have said. I wished I was quick off the mark and dealt with the issue there and then. I now know I  was strong but it was an internal strength that allowed me to endure, that allowed me to laugh and smile even when I was unhappy.  In my opinion, once you still have the ability to genuinely love and care about others despite your experiences, then you have overcome.

How have you dealt with challenges?
Has your resilience grown as you mature or is it stagnant?
What advice or pearls of wisdom would you offer?

14 thoughts on “Building your resilience”

  1. Very insightful, Phoenicia! My husband is a therapist who works in addiction and he tells his clients the same thing – reflect on what you were *getting* from the drugs or alcohol ( a sense of security, an escape, reassurance, etc.). Then the work is to find healthier ways of getting those same needs met in the future.


  2. I try to look at things that go wrong from the perspective of how bad it will really be if I look back in ten years. Usually it all doesn’t really matter. Not that the feeling isn’t real and cannot be big, and I think you should absolutely not feel bad feeling all the feels. But after some time goes by, it’s usually possible to look beyond that.


  3. I’m with Jeannette in that I feel my resilience grows as I age. Going through the deaths of my parents only 8 months apart could have broken me to tiny bits (well, it did), but being resilient allowed me to keep getting up day after day without them until it became a habit.


  4. Everyone in this world is fighting their own wars, the winner is the one who is developing resilience with their experiences and not giving up on the situation. One should try to fight all the challenges to be better than the previous of yours and this is how you can force success to follow your way.


  5. Resilience is not something that can simply be taught, it has a lot to do with what experiences you had, how you learn to tackle issues and solve problems throughout your childhood/teenage days. Afterward, as a grown-up, you are either far more prepared to deal with issues, or you are a complete mess in face of problems.


  6. Phoenicia — I definitely feel my resilience has grown stronger as I’ve gotten older. I think we know how to utilize all the knowledge that comes with overcoming life’s challenges. Truth is, many of those challenges, looking back, weren’t as awful as we thought they were at the time.


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