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how to train your brain to have a resilient mindset

well-being

strong and resilient black woman

Having a resilient mindset has been all the rage since the beginning of 2020.  In fact, if you love social media as much as we do, you’ve probably seen or used the hashtag #resilience along with over two million Instagram users. We’ve seen it, we’ve heard of it. But do we actually know what it means? Let’s start with the basics.

Resilience is a person’s ability to adapt, recover, bounce back, and move on from an unpleasant situation.

Okay, then. Problem solved! We should all just be resilient and call it day. That way, everyone will be happy, right?

Well… it’s not that simple. We are all wired uniquely and lead very different lives. Developing a resilient mindset could take some time. Just like any other skill, we need to train our brains for it. The last thing we would want is for someone to “keep going” by ignoring all their problems and putting up a strong front, then eventually break down (see: toxic positivity). Resilience is not to be confused with “surviving”, as the former pertains to recognizing the problem and viewing all obstacles as learning experiences.

 

Why is it important to develop a resilient mindset?

Resilient people don’t necessarily see the world in rose-colored glasses, neither do they live on Cloud 9. Just like any of us, these people still experience grief, despair, and even depression. However, when things don’t go as planned, it is resilience that drives us not just to make it through the bumpy road, but to drive through the bumpy road like a boss. In a simpler sense, having a resilient mindset gives us hope. Instead of saying: “Everything will fall into place”, resilient people would say ”Everything will fall into place. And in case it doesn’t, I know I’ll be okay.”

If you’re still not convinced of its importance, don’t take my word for it. BACP accredited Psychotherapist Joshua Miles believes that higher resilience leads to improved learning. His research found that having a resilient mindset is related to increased physical health and a lower mortality rate (2015).

Now that we’ve talked quite a bit about resilience, let’s dive into mindset training! According to the research of psychologist Susan Kobasa, there are three elements that are essential to building a resilient mindset:

Challenge

Perceive trials as challenges rather than unfortunate, paralyzing life events.

Accept that there will always be obstacles, but always view them as lessons learned and opportunities for growth.

personal control

Understand that there are things that are beyond your control, so focus on things that you can actually control.

When you experience loss, search for new opportunities rather than dwelling on what you lost.

commitment

Motivate yourself to get your game on because you are committed to your goals and aspirations.

Believe that life has a purpose and that you have a purpose, to persevere whether you have an assurance that things will work out or not.

Here are some tips you can try in your journey to building a resilient mindset:

  • Set realistic goals and be flexible.
  • Practice self-care/Fuel your body.
  • Always have a Plan B…and C and so on.
  • Don’t be too hard on yourself.
  • Seek help when you need it.
  • Embrace change.
  • Remember that everything is temporary.

I hope this was able to help you one way or another.

Developing a resilient mindset may not be as easy as it seems, but it leads to peace.

It gives us hope that we can conquer anything for as long as we understand that change is inevitable and we are not defined by our failures. Helen Keller was right – indeed, the world is full of suffering, but it is also full of the overcoming of it. Here’s hoping we can all grow through what we go through! *Hugs*

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