One of the key personal attributes I have learned over the years is how important resiliency is. When I see stories about those who fail at something (or give up before they even try) and then in effect “check out”, I do wish that more people had the ability to bounce back from a hardship.
One of the definitions of resiliency is “the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; to have toughness.” Researchers, including from University of Minnesota, show that the levels of resiliency vary among Americans. Many have very little, others have some, and some have the inherent ability to bounce back no matter what happened to them. The exact breakout is impossible to determine, but resiliency varies widely.
I can’t tell you how many times I wanted to give up over the years, but I never did. While some times I took a “break”, such as from investing after I lost tons of money in the dot-com boom, I kept pushing ahead. I have had business issues, personal challenges, and other hardships, but one thing I have learned over the years is that I am resilient. People have told me this as they learn my story…and the fact that I possess this trait is starting to sink in.
The good news if the studies, including one from a few years ago from the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Nursing Research, show that people can develop resiliency as well. If you think you can’t bounce back from a financial hardship, life challenge, natural disaster, etc. all hope is not lost, as resiliency can be developed.
Resiliency is so important as well for any family that is struggling financially. Maybe a low to moderate income family lost their job, so they struggle to pay the rent, buy food, and cover living expenses. Resiliency is the ability to get back up; find that next job, keep hope up and pushing forward.
When someone gets very sick or a medical condition, they may feel their life is done. Maybe they drown in medical bills, struggle to keep up with their living expenses, and stay positive in light of their condition. Resiliency can keep them going. I know of a family members mom who has serious colon cancer for years now (as chemo has stabilized her but causes her to be very sick) and everyday she gets up and keeps going.
I am not sure where my resiliency came from. Maybe some is genetic, maybe some started when I was a kid and my dad walked out and it eventually sunk in that him leaving was not my fault. I was able to carry on. No matter where it came from resiliency has served me well.
Over the years, I have lost literally millions in the stock market. If I quit on the bad times, I would have never made it back. I have had my businesses hacked by competitors, but I recovered when I could have given up. I have had business projects come crashing down, only to keep pushing ahead.
I missed a career opportunity when I was In the corporate world, and took the feedback to heart as to why I missed it. I was not defensive but rather reflective as to what I heard, and where I needed to improve. Then when a newer, better job in the same company came up I was promoted…if fact that was to the youngest director level position. Resiliency is also the ability to listen to feedback, make a plan, and try to take control of the next opportunity. Imagine if I gave up, walked out in a “huff” from that company saying it was unfair when I was not selected the first time…I would have missed the best career opportunity ever in that director role.
There are countless articles on resiliency on the internet. I always like Psychology Today for information on topics such as this. Any readers have any resiliency stories they want to share? As reading about others may help people develop their own…as they will know life goes on if they keep pushing forward.