Any of you who have been through a tough time and finally emerged intact and standing have increased your resilience. Unfortunately, we often don’t stop to recognize and acknowledge our victories when they occur. We gloss over our increased resilience and ability to deal with difficult situations, robbing ourselves of a potent skillset.
When everything is falling apart, resilience is the quiet little voice (or maybe the not so quiet voice) that says “Yes, you can.” It’s the voice that says “Stand up and get back on track.” after you’ve fallen away from the path you desire to follow. The voice that whispers “You can do this” as you’re quaking in fear, waiting to start that very public presentation.
Resilience is your unique voice that anchors you into your purpose, ultimately telling you who you are. If you haven’t consciously acknowledged your growing resilience in the face of difficulty, this lack of self-approval and awareness may be rooted in your Emotional DNA—patterns of thoughts, emotions and actions that you have inherited from your ancestors. If instead of an encouraging voice you have an inner voice that says “You’ll never do it. You’ll never be good enough.” this inflexible negativity (which is the polar opposite of resilience) too, may be rooted in your Emotional DNA.
Let’s say your parents or grandparents made it out of Vietnam or communist Cuba, came to the US without a penny, set to work with a will and made their fortune. It’s highly likely you were raised with an incredible sense of resilience and have an inner voice that positively urges you to strive for more. “You can do it! You can do anything if you set your mind to it and are willing to work hard. Nothing can keep you down!” Notice how you are anchored in the present and future? That’s resilience.
If you come from a family that lost a lot of money or failed at various business ventures or has been plagued with a series of misfortunes, the voice you may have inherited might come from a place of hopelessness. “Why bother trying? Things won’t work out anyhow.” That’s usually limiting ancient history pretending to be your truth right now.
If you have a positive encouraging inner voice and your resiliency is high, maximize it! But if you don’t, it’s not a disaster. It’s a portal to possibility. You can coach that inner voice into becoming a positive support partner by 1) recognizing the negative input; 2) accepting that it is what it is and that you inherited this voice from one (or many) of your predecessors (it’s not you!); and 3) realizing you can change this voice by replacing negative heart and body-felt statements with positive heart and body-felt statements that you can accept as true. For example, “Why bother trying? Things won’t work out anyhow.” can be shifted to: “Take a deep breath. I can figure this out. Here’s one thing I can do, one thing I can think and/or feel right now and take it one small step at a time.”
When the first small step pays off, even the tiniest of changes, celebrate yourself! Do the same thing with the next step and the next. And feel it. Before you know it you will have successfully coached your inner voice and rewired your brain and become your own best advocate for positive change. Now that is what resilience is all about.
The pandemic flattened a lot of people. But there were also so many who pivoted and bounced back, creating new careers and new directions for themselves and their families and their businesses. They chose to elevate their thoughts, feelings and actions to move from overwhelm and self-doubt to determination and self-confidence. If you are one of those people, take a moment and honor your accomplishment. It’s so important to consciously wire that into your brain so you can draw upon it when you need it.
If you still feel flattened and even traumatized by the whole experience, if you find you have fearful, limiting voices around future possibilities and find yourself stuck in survival mode, sit down and mindfully map out one new thought, one new feeling and one new action you can take. Be determined to practice those three things. Be relentless and take your foot off the brake. Put down the “yes-buts” and know that you can change this. You can build resilience by taking control of the voice within. Understanding that you can shift your situation this way equips you with a skillset that will only keep you moving forward.
Join me on an adventure to build capability and resilience at our Disney World event at The Beach and Yacht Club November 10-13. Come find and wire in your own unique Resilience DNA.