~ together, we can cultivate generational self-awareness ~ building resilience from the inside out ~
~ together, we can cultivate generational self-awareness ~ building resilience from the outside in ~
~ together, we can cultivate generational self-awareness ~ building resilience from the inside out ~

Building Resilience


Resilience is our ability to adapt when facing trauma, danger and hardship. How can it be improved?

We all face challenges, adversity and traumatic experiences in our lives, and we all have a natural ability to bounce back both physically and emotionally. Resilience is our ability to adapt when facing trauma, danger and hardship. While there are certain factors that can make one person more resilient than another, the good news is that resilience is not a fixed personality trait. It can be improved and enhanced.

Let’s suppose that you wanted to climb a mountain. How would you go about it? Most likely you would find the right equipment first, get to know the area well, enlist the help of a guide or more experienced people, practice, etc. This preparation would enhance your chances of success and improve your overall experience.

In the same way, to become more resilient we can develop behaviors, thoughts, actions and connections that would prepare us to better handle daily stresses and bounce back from adversity and trauma. Becoming more resilient can also help us grow and trust in our ability to face life’s challenges.

Understanding Resilience

The definition of resilience by the American Psychological Association, “the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats or even significant sources of stress”, emphasizes that resilience is also a measure of flexibility. We know that pliable things that can bend or stretch can also return to their original shape when no longer under pressure or threat.

“A tree that bends with the wind does not break.”
– Anonymous –

Our resilience is an intricate mix of genetics, psychology, social and external influences and it can be exercised and improved. Scientific studies have shown the effectiveness of mindfulness training in building and enhancing resilience. Additional research has also demonstrated that continued mindfulness practices result in long-term resilience.

Strategies to Enhance your Resilience

Building resilience is a gradual process that requires developing and practicing certain skills and adopting a resilient mindset. The following strategies can help you improve your resilience and by extension your overall well-being.

1. Recognize and accept setbacks:

Life is filled with challenges and failures; they help us to grow and become stronger. Learning to acknowledge adversity is the first step in becoming more resilient.

2. Cultivate Self-Awareness:

Identifying your triggers and understanding your reactions in challenging situations can help you become more flexible and better adapt to changing circumstances.

3. Build and maintain a support system:

Cultivate strong relationships with friends, family, support groups and people who align with your goals and aspirations. Expressing your emotions and seeking help from like-minded individuals can help you process and overcome challenges.

4. Prioritize self-care:

Taking care of yourself will enable you to be stronger in the face of adversity. Exercise regularly, eat a nutritious and well-balanced diet, ensure that you get enough recuperative sleep. Seek professional help when needed.

5. Set achievable goals:

When you break down your goals into small, realistic steps you can achieve greater success which will motivate you and give you the confidence needed to face life’s challenges.

6. Change the narrative:

Try not to dwell on problems and fixate on what can go wrong. Focus on the positive and get proactive in the search for solutions or strategies that can get you back on track.

7. Practice mindfulness:

Mindfulness practices based on meditation, awareness and intention promote positive effects on physical and mental health. By intentionally focusing on the present moment without judgement you can enhance your resilience. Leaving the past behind, forgoing future forecasting and calming your internal dialogue can strengthen your ability to adapt to change and face life’s challenges.

Daily Resilience Practices

Armed with the strategies we outlined above; you can then create resilient forming habits by just following some simple daily practices:

  • Expressive writing

Writing our thoughts and emotions can be very cathartic. It can propel us forward by shedding new light and insight on the challenges and problems we face. Try writing your thoughts and emotions for about 20 minutes on any particular matter that may be troubling you. Try to go deep, deeper than you would normally go verbally. Do not worry about how it sounds or whether it is well written. The goal is to express yourself without judgment.

Facing your fears may be a bit overwhelming at first but it will help to form new associations you have with a particular issue. For example, if you are prone to stage fright, try attending more meetings, speaking for a very short time to colleagues, friends and family. This exposure to situations that take you outside of your comfort zone will help you grow stronger by signaling to your brain that you can remain calm and safe in stressful situations. Try incorporating some sort of exposure therapy into your daily life, regardless of how small the gesture or action may seem, it will help you to create an empowering habit.

  • Practice self-compassion

Sometimes we feel particularly overwhelmed by our problems because we do not always show ourselves the compassion we deserve, by pretending we are tough and avoiding showing or expressing our feelings and judging our reactions too harshly.

Try to notice and name your feelings without judgement by saying to yourself ‘This hurts’, ‘This is stressful’, ‘This is painful’. Remember that you are not alone and that everyone suffers and goes through challenging times. Try saying ‘This suffering is part of life’ or ‘Everyone struggles at some point’. Be kind to yourself by setting intentions like ‘May I be compassionate to myself’, ‘May I accept myself’ or ‘May I be patient’.

  • Meditate

There are many guided meditations that can help you calm negative thoughts and emotions and enhance your capacity to face adversity and stress.

You can try the Body Scan, for example. Focus on each part of your body from head to toe and try to let go of the tension. By relaxing your body, you can dissipate the physical manifestations of stress: tight chest, knotted stomach, among others. This will signal to your nervous system that you are calm and safe, leaving you in a better and stronger place to face life’s setbacks.

  • Practice gratitude

Gratitude can help you rewire your brain to become more resilient, happier and more connected to others.

Everyday try to reflect on something that made you happy. Express your gratitude for the positive feelings you derived from it.  Acknowledge your gratitude for your friends and family and for those who are nice to you or show you compassion and appreciation. Try showing your appreciation with words or actions.  Reflect and appreciate the world around you -nature, your community- and express your gratitude for the way your life is enriched by it.

Ready to Build your Resilience?

Building resilience goes beyond understanding it and reading about it, it requires action. Make it part of your daily routine and it will soon become a habit that will help you rewire your brain. You will notice that you will become stronger and happier.

There are times, however, that we feel overwhelmed and may find it difficult to find a path forward. This is one of the reasons we developed the BEE ME Project. We are passionate about helping people to live authentic, fulfilling and happy lives. So, if you need help or just want to learn more about us and join us as we forge forward with our mission and vision, please contact us. We look forward to hearing from you!