“I get knocked down, but I get up again…”
WHAT IS RESILIENCE?
Resilience is the ability to respond and adapt well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, or major sources of stress–such as family and relationship problems, health issues, or workplace and financial stressors. It’s the act of “bouncing back” from really tough experiences or events.
Being resilient does not mean that a person does not experience difficulty or isn’t impacted by distressing events. The impact of adversity and trauma on anyone is often painful,challenging and bloody unfair. However, resilience enables one to weave a powerful story inthe wake of such challenging experiences–assisting in one’s recovery and one’s ability to build a richer, more fulfilling life.
Resilience is not a trait that you’ve either got or you don’t. It can be nurtured and developed in everyone, through certain behaviours, thoughts and actions.
HOW TO BUILD RESILIENCE
Meaningful relationships with family members, friends or others can help build resilience. Not only does this give you access to help and support from others, but it also helps you see how you can show up for other people in their times of hardship, thereby developing greater confidence in your own ability to move through adversity
You cannot help the fact that life will throw some pretty stressful and unpleasant stuff your way from time to time. You can, however, change how you respond to it. While some things seem completely dire in the moment, there is nothing that cannot be overcome in time–try looking beyond the present moment to how the future might bring relief, perspective and/or growth.
Be gentle with yourself, allow yourself to try new things, and develop confidence in your ability to solve problems and overcome obstacles. Remind yourself “You got this.”
Set some achievable goals and move towards them regularly. Develop a clear understanding of what your values are and what deeper needs motivate you. Celebrate yourself for your achievements, big or small. And instead of focusing on things that seem so far out of reach, consider what small action or behaviour you can commit on a daily-basis that helps you move in the direction you want to go.
When a challenging situation presents itself, make the decision to take action, instead of wallowing in self-pity or detaching from the reality of your problems by ignoring them and wishing they would go away on their own.
Nothing stays the same, and as a result of hardship or adversity, some goals or desired outcomes may no longer be possible. Get clear on situations that are outside your control, and shift your focus to the things in your life you can have some influence over
Some people unpack their experience with hardship and trauma through creative and artistic outlets, like writing, painting, making music, live performance, etc. Through this, they can develop a flexible and personal way of understanding their experience and also connect with others who may have been through similar challenges.
A positive outlook helps you prime your mind for the good experiences and opportunities that might come your way. If you can imagine what might go wrong, you can also imagine what might go right. Leave room for hope and possibility.
After overcoming obstacles, tackling adversity, dealing with grief and loss and moving forward after traumatic experience, many people often profess to learning much more about themselves, who they are, and what they’re capable of. People who have experienced tragedies and hardship sometimes report (after the fact)finding greater meaning in relationships, feeling stronger and more capable even when vulnerable or unsure, a greater sense of self-worth, a deeper connection with spirituality, and a heightened appreciation for life
Be mindful of your own needs and feelings, and set healthy boundaries. Get involved in activities that are good for you, that you enjoy and leave you with a sense of accomplishment. Taking good care of your mind and your body leaves you stronger and more equipped to deal with situations that require resilience
OK, WHAT NOW?
If you’re looking to build resilience in your own life, it can be useful to
Reach out to family and friends, or find yourself a support group where people might be facing similar struggles.
Books and podcasts can be great to learn more about how other people have overcome extreme hardships in their own lives. These stories might help inspire or motivate you to focus on building resilience.
Ask around, get on Google, speak to the Support Act Wellbeing Helpline, or ask your GP for recommendations. There is a huge marketplace of mental health professionals out there, available in-person, online and over the phone.
The Support Act Wellbeing Helpline is a free, confidential counselling service that is available 24/7 to anyone working in Australian music or the arts, who needs to talk to someone about any aspect of their wellbeing.
It is delivered in partnership with Access EAP*, with funding support from the Australian Government through the Office for the Arts, and is staffed by professional counsellors who offer expertise in all areas related to mental health (e.g. depression, anxiety, addiction, suicidal feelings) as well as issues which can be mental health related (such as loneliness, relationship breakdown, financial worries, illness and workplace conflict).
Remember: If you, or someone you care about, is in crisis or at immediate risk dial 000 now.
EXPERT / AMBASSADOR ADVICE
Julia speaks about her mental health struggles and how SA helped.
Julia speaks about her mental health struggles and how SA helped.
BLOG ARTICLES ON RESILIENCE
TOP 3 PODCASTS
Missy Higgins | 81 MIN
Everyone is imperpect, Hugh van Cuylenburg, founder of The Resilience Project interviews a variety of different people who are willing to make themselves vulnerable, by sharing their own struggles and imperfections.
Hugh and comedian Ryan Shelton then discuss the valuable takeaways we can all apply to our own imperfect lives.
Listen to The Imperfects here
Rejecting Ed Sheeran | 30 MIN
We Regret To Inform You: The Rejection Podcast
Every successful artist, creative and entrepreneur has faced rejection and failures along their way to success, this podcast goes into their stories and how these individuals tackled and used these setbacks to reach their goals.
Listen to We Regret To Inform You here
How to Fail: James Acaster | 62 MIN
How To Fail With Elizabeth Day
A podcast that celebrates that things don’t always go right. Every week a new guest join’s host Elizabeth Day on How to Fail to explore what their failures taught them about how they use them to succeed.
Listen to How To Fail With Elizabeth Day here.
TOP 3 BOOKS
TOP 3 APPS
To foster a positive outlook to each day, Delightful encourages user to document 3 good things from their days everyday. The gratitude app also offers prompts to make journaling easy.
Free on iOs and Android
Science-based gratitude journal that makes self-care fun! The app provides daily prompts and daily inspirational questions that help you delve deeper and explore new areas of appreciation in your life.