Rewire your brain to meet life’s challenges
Everyone has challenges, and while many of us succumb to them, others transcend these difficult times to become stronger. These special individuals are able to use their hardships to transform the way they think about their lives and their lives’ purpose. Can you guess the one thing they all have in common? Resilience.
Life’s disappointments don’t have to derail us. When our expectations aren’t met, when we feel frustrated and disillusioned, that’s the time when we must move forward and not allow ourselves to get stuck.
The good news is that resilience is something you can develop and strengthen over time. Here are the five habits that emotionally resilient people practice when the going gets tough:
1. See the upside in every situation
When life throws you a curveball, resilient people look for the lesson they can take away from it. They don’t take failure personally, and instead see life’s setbacks as part of the learning process.
“We usually tend to exaggerate when something goes wrong, calling it life changing, or a disaster, which may not be the case. So, take a moment and reflect,” Psychologist David Reiss says. Try to get a broader perspective on the situation, no matter how negative it may be; this may allow you to see that the impact may not be as long-lasting as you fear.
2. Have healthy coping strategies
It wasn’t until I started exploring mindfulness and meditation that I learned how to deal with the stressors in my life. The beauty of meditation is that it’s a state of being that we can teach ourselves. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have a calm and peaceful state of mind amidst the chaos? Don’t use the excuse, “I’m too busy,” or “I don’t have time.” With enough practice, you can enter this state of mind anytime.
Another great coping strategy is keeping a gratitude journal. Do you ever notice that when you choose to see abundance, more good naturally starts coming into your life? The same is true for those who choose to see what’s lacking; they are never satisfied and always want more. Reflect on what you have verses what you don’t have. Where you are in your life versus where you’re not.
3. Surround themselves with positive people
Having a strong support network is everything. Friends and family are the people who help us bounce back from life’s challenges.
Ever heard Jim Rohn’s famous quote, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with?” So many of us don’t realize the impact other people have on our well being. Who you spend time with influences and shapes who you become.
That being said, you can’t control who you work with or family members, but you can set boundaries in unhealthy relationships. The first step to setting boundaries is to personally validate your own feelings and forget about everyone else’s opinions.
When you think about how to express your feelings, this is usually the step that gets people stuck, and when the fear and insecurity start to take over. That’s why it’s important to believe what you are say is true on a deep level.
There is no doubt in your mind that this is a toxic relationship. You know you deserve to be treated better. When you can get to this mentally strong place, you are less likely to go back on your word. Resilient people have no problem setting boundaries and sticking to them.
4. Embrace the unknown
We all have a history that includes some negative – sometimes traumatizing – experiences. We all have baggage to go along with that bad history. We’ve all been hurt by someone. The problem is that many of us remain paralyzed by what scares us, afraid of the unknown and afraid to step outside our comfort zone.
We need to reframe our perspective to see the unknown as an exciting adventure. The comfort zone you planned to live in won’t help you live your best life anyway, and your routine way of thinking won’t move you toward true happiness. Plus, if you knew everything that was going to happen in your life, where’s the fun in that?
One of my favorite quotes from Emily Dickinson sums this up perfectly: “The soul should always stand ajar ready to welcome the next ecstatic experience.”
Miracles can happen every day…if we’re open to them.
5. Have faith
Believe that you can deal with any challenge that comes your way. Let go of control and accept that you can’t know everything. By staying positive and focused on what you really want, you will be able to overcome the fear and self-doubt that prevents you from reaching your full potential and living the life you want.