On the continuing theme of building up you cumulative reserves to be able to better withstand life’s ongoing pressures, I submit the next 3 ideas. For the first 3 items on the list, refer back to Resiliency (Part 1). Again, look for those areas that seem to resonate best with your lifestyle and expectation, and seek to apply them to your life. If nothing changes, nothing will change.
4. See crisis as opportunity to grow. Things happen to all of us from time to time. Some more sever and impacting than others. Regardless of the crisis, can we calm our emotions enough to process the event and learn from it? When my kids were younger and they would either make a mistake or experience something earth-shattering (age-appropriate), I would frequently ask them, “what did you learn from that”. What life-lesson can be drawn from the event? What can we do differently the next time? Accept the fact that some days you are the pigeon, and some days you are the statue.
5. Look for self-discovery after the struggle/loss/crisis/event. It has been said that crisis builds character. More accurately though, crisis reveals character. Our character gets formed over time as we respond appropriately to life’s everyday events. When the big trauma hits us, we show what we are made of. Much like bumping a glass filled with liquid; what has been filled with spills out. Self-discovery is the ability to be introspective and realize the improvements that need to be made in our beliefs, values, or emotions. At the top of the list of necessary improvements, needs to be the element of self-control. When we lose that, we risk being taken over by life’s external pressures.
6. Look at the wider picture. Myopic views of life are limited in scope. We can easily make quick conclusions or decision with very minimal information, but experience teaches us that those decisions may not always be the best. Keeping with the resilient theme, if we are to position ourselves to withstand the daily pressures of life and stay strong, we need to look at the larger picture, or meaning, of life. Clearly, there are always details of our situation over which we have very limited knowledge. We may feel like we are the only ones suffering, until we take a look at others who have not only suffered as we, but have shown tremendous coping strategies. Wider views bring deeper knowledge and greater understanding. Let it not be said of you that you cannot see the forest for the trees. Rise above your situation and see the view from a wider angle. Accept the fact that some days you are the pigeon, and some days you are the statue.