Going through hell? Keep going. Here are 10 things highly resilient people do differently. These are 10 ways how to be a tough person.
We all go through those awful times when it seems as though life itself has conspired against us. Relationships become rocky, we get a bad review at work, we discover a health problem… but we get through.
When you face bad times, don’t dwell on the negativity. Instead, bring to mind the most resilient people you know. By focusing on other resilient people, you’ll inspire resilience in yourself.
It’s a proven psychological fact that the more you focus on something the more you magnify that thing in your mind. So, focus on other resilient people and you’ll develop resilience in yourself.
Here are ten other ways to develop resilience, as inspired by some of my personal heroes.
The 10 things highly resilient people do differently (A.K.A How to be a tough person)
1. Highly resilient people step back and see the picture in full
Stress is a matter of perspective. If you hit rock bottom and you focus on how terrible you feel and how much you’ve failed, you’re going to feel lousy. But if you step back and look at the bigger picture, if you realise that this negative time is just one chord in a grand symphony called life, you’ll suddenly feel much more positive.
Step back and see the whole picture.
2. Highly resilient people tell themselves that they’ll learn from the bad times
Bad times don’t happen to good people. Bad times make good people. It’s when you go through hell that you find your inner strength. It’s when you face hard times that you learn important life lessons.
Tell yourself that a bad time is just a lesson you’re going to learn, and that once you learn the lesson you’ll be that much stronger. That’s what the most resilient people do.
3. Highly resilient people live for this moment right now
It’s easy to make the mistake of exaggerating the extent of the mess you’re in. You face one bad time and it feels like it’s game over. You find a lump on your body and you think you’ve got cancer. But most lumps aren’t cancer and most bad times aren’t game over. When you face a bad time, tell yourself it’s just one moment, just one thing, it’s not the be all and end all.
4. Highly resilient people welcome change.
A lot of us fear the unknown and fear change. But changes happen for a reason. And sometimes what seems like a change for the worse is actually a change for the better. Find the opportunity in metamorphosis. If your relationship ends, it’s a chance to find a stronger one. If you fall out with friends you’ll just find better ones. Change is an opportunity for improvement. Embrace the change and make the most of the opportunities that arise.
5. Highly resilient people trust life
A huge part of a highly resilient mentality is the ability to trust life. If you’re driving and you hit a patch of black ice, the best way to regain control is to turn into the skid. Same with life. If you hit an unseen change in your life, go with it. Life has its own direction. Sometimes, all you need do is sit back and ride the waves.
6. Highly resilient people get a sense of perspective
It’s so easy to think that your own problems are immense. Often, we focus on ourselves and we think that life is just so much harder and worse for us. At those times, highly resilient people step back and get a sense of perspective. They allow themselves to consider all those people who have it harder (and there are millions of them). It’s hard to think your problem are that great when you consider all the people starving around the world. Once you get a sense of perspective you realise your own problems are usually pretty trivial.
7. Highly resilient people admit they need help
One of the most important traits of truly resilient people is the ability to put their hands up in the air and say, “I’m in a tight spot, please help me.”
So many people are afraid to ask for help. They believe asking for help is a sign of weakness. That’s a terrible attitude. Truly strong people don’t mind admitting that they’re not perfect, and they don’t mind asking for help when they need it.
8. They see hope in adversity
Highly resilient people know that bad times are there to offer a challenge. Think about how bland life would be if it were always easy. There’d be no tests, no need for inner strength. Bad times are a fight. You step in the ring and you fight back and you learn how strong you are, and even if you take the occasional punch all it does is wake you up.
Bad times are a challenge, and an opportunity to prove how strong you truly are.
9. They connect with their reason
Personally, when I need resilience I turn to history. I think about the most resilient people ever, people like Martin Luther King, Abraham Lincoln, Winston Churchill, Joan of Arc, Mother Theresa…. They all faced astronomical adversity. How did they get through? For my money, they got through on the back of 1 thing: They cared so deeply about their pursuits that they simply couldn’t fail. It’s like those stories of mothers who find the strength to lift trucks or cars off their children; they do it because they can’t not do it.
Connect with your inner passion, with the fire in your belly. Let it burn like coals in a steam engine. That energy will power you through.
10. Highly resilient people know how to refuel their energy
Life gets you down. You run out of energy. Either you recharge your energy or your spent. Often it’s that simple. That’s why the most resilient people know precisely how to recharge their energy.
How do you recharge your energy? Do you meditate? Do you go to a spa? Do you go for a run? Perhaps you straight up get the hell out of dodge and go on vacation. Whatever you need to do, do it; get your head back in the game and when you’re ready step back up to the plate.
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