Everyone needs to become more resilient so we can more effectively cope with adversity.
The great thing about resiliency is that it’s not a natural personality trait. Anyone can learn how to become more resilient by paying attention to how they’re thinking and behaving.
The world-renowned neuroscientist Richard Davidson has found evidence that mindfulness increases resilience, and the more you practice mindfulness, the more resilient your brain becomes.
With this in mind, I wanted to share the 5 most effective mindfulness strategies to build up your resilience levels.
Before we do, consider the following:
When you have an argument with someone, you often end up naturally thinking about what just happened. You create stories about what it all means. You wonder how you could have handled the situation differently.
Mindfulness reduces the thinking that happens after events so that you have more energy to act in the present. It also changes your brain so that you’re more resilient when the negative events actually happen.
All of this thinking that happens after events isn’t useful. By training yourself in the time after negative events happen, you’ll learn how to bounce back from difficulties much more quickly.
Here are the key aspects of resilience:
- Positive relationships—is the most important factor.
- The ability to make plans and take action to solve problems.
- The capacity to manage difficult emotions—mindfulness is an important aspect here.
- Effective communication skills.
Here are five ways to build resilience:
- Nurture relationships. Have a range of positive, supportive connections within and outside your family. If you don’t, take steps to improve the situation. Join a club, local group, volunteer group, or an evening class.
- Find meaning in difficulties. When faced with adversity, see if you can discover some positive way in which you’ve dealt with the challenge. People often report improved relationships, greater consciousness, or appreciation of life in the face of great difficulties.
- Be optimistic. Use mindfulness to shift your attention from negative rumination to more positive thoughts about the future. Hope and optimism is a choice. Avoid seeing crises as insurmountable. You can’t change the fact that very stressful events happen, but you can learn to change your response to that. The tiniest of changes counts, and meditation can help.
Avoid seeing crises as insurmountable. You can’t change the fact that very stressful events happen, but you can learn to change your response to that.
Be decisive. Make decisions and take action rather than hoping things will get better one day. If you’re not good at this, read about how to improve this skill or ask a trusted friend to help. Not making a decision is in itself a decision.
- Accept that change is part of living. Expect things to change and adversity to occur, rather than pretend all will always be well. Change is part of life. Your goal is to cope effectively rather than avoid loss or pain.
- When it comes to resilience, flexibility is the name of the game. Discovering ways to adapt to the changes that life throws at you makes you more able to cope.
What are your methods of becoming more resilient? Share your ideas on Ideapod – a social network for sharing your ideas.
Check out the following resources:
- ARTICLE: 4 Rituals From the Philosophy of Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius That Will Make You Mentally Tougher
- IDEAPOD: Search results for ideas mentioning “resilience”
- COURSE: The Resilience, Joy and Power Mindset
This article was originally published on The Power of Ideas.