“The ability to bounce back, to recover from a stressful event”

Resilience is your ability to adapt well and recover quickly after stress, adversity, trauma or tragedy. If you have a resilient disposition, you are better able to maintain poise and a healthy level of physical and psychological wellness in the face of life’s challenges. If you’re less resilient, you’re more likely to dwell on problems, feel overwhelmed, use unhealthy coping tactics to handle stress, and develop anxiety and depression.

The skills of resilience. The positive psychology movement of the past 20 years has opened research on happiness, well-being, and resilience. You can develop resilience by mastering your stories. Become more open minded. Train your attention on the more-positive aspects of your life. You can use purposeful, trained attention to decrease negative thoughts in your mind and bring greater focus on the most meaningful aspect of an experience.

The US Army has adopted the core tenants of positive psychology to establish the Master Resilience Training Program. They have put some 55,000 soldiers through it. The Army Resilience training focuses on; emotional, cognitive, mental, physical, and spiritual resilience. Training in these areas can improve your resiliency, enhance your quality of life, and decrease your stress and anxiety by teaching you to view life’s inevitable challenges as opportunities. See the Army poster below: 

The good news is that these same resiliency skills apply to all of us.

Learning the ABCs of how we interpret experiences and how that shapes our thinking and feelings is a foundational resilience skill. 

Why is it important to build your resilience? Being in the arena, out there in the workforce, you need to be both ready and resilient.  Ready to step up and do your job, and resilient enough to bounce back from obstacles and challenges that you will inevitably face. Lost productivity from stress and absenteeism is in the billions of dollars each year. A healthy, productive workforce is one that is both ready and resilient. Think about a recent challenge your company faced. If you came through it, stronger than ever, chances are, the whole group is stronger and healthier. Resilience can be contagious; Army units win medals and whole companies win awards. Seeing others jump in and tackle tough challenges is inspiring. And resiliency is contagious.