The capacity to recover quickly from a problem is called resilience. But it is not a trait that one has or doesn’t have. Although it is partly determined genetically, it is a skill which can be developed. An intrinsic part of positive psychology, resilience is a magic drug which can heal all wounds and right all wrongs.
This tendency to bounce back depends one’s experiences. And that’s one of the reasons people have different resilience levels. It depends on the amount of emotional distress a person has gone through – no pain, no gain!
While no one comes with a shield to protect oneself from difficult situations, some people spring back easily, while it’s a struggle for others. People with a strong sense of purpose are more resilient than others. It has been scientifically proved that purpose in life builds resilience by protecting the brain against the negative effects of stress.
Resilience goes hand in hand with optimism, emotional intelligence, humour, compassion and equanimity. One should also factor in sociability and social competence – the basis of all social interactions. Relationships need positive emotions and regulation of negative emotions to survive. To enrich the quality of relationship, one needs to continually enhance one’s resilience.
Developing resilience is a personal journey. It needs to be built like a muscle – through small yet incremental steps. Replacing old paradigms, say for example worry or anxiety, with renewed positive interpretations of a situation can be a focal point here. Leveraging one of the most difficult events of life by positively finding meaning in one’s stressful environment can help one become resilient.
The Japanese concept of happiness,’ ikigai’ rests on the premise of looking forward to waking up every morning. A strong purpose can make life meaningful – who are you, what makes you feel alive the most, what are you grateful about et. al. By fostering positive thoughts and emotions, one can broaden one’s thoughts and actions towards fulfilling experiences. Happier people are known to be more resilient and vice-versa. Humour seems to have eroded from people. Incorporating daily humour leads to improved relationships and in turn breeds more resilience.
Since no relationship is conflict proof and because it comes with its own share of conflicts and issues, resilience is the secret ingredient to make it work. Resilient people are known to enjoy better quality of relationships. Show me some evidence you have resilience.