From the time we lace up the first pair of combat boots or the first time we strap a duffel-bag on our backs, we as soldier, turned veterans are resilient. We heard the Drill Sergeants (DS) yell and tell us to “suck it up and drive on” or “take a knee, and drink water”. Both expressions suggested that we had better pull our crap together and pull it together fast… It also meant that regardless of what emotions we felt, how our bodies may hurt or if we had fear, uncertainties, or hesitations, we needed to get over it ALL- RIGHT NOW!
In the end of the screaming, we thought “go just one more”, take “One More Step“. Even when you would’ve bet money that you had no more left, you went one more.
I like to think, resiliency is built over-time. I believe that it is similar to any other muscle in your body, except this muscle is spread all over. You see I believe your heart has to have a fiber of resiliency. Its it in your heart where strength and courage come from. Isn’t that what the Cowardly Lion went see the Wizard regarding. A new heart? For courage? Well maybe its wasn’t the Lion that needed a heart, but indeed the Tin Man. (I think the Cowardly Lion already had a heart and he just needed to develop fibers of courage.) Yes, that’s my story. That is what I believe to be true. You get my geesh!
Resilient people have 4-distinct combination characteristics.
1) A certain level of acceptance of life; choosing to live life rather than life choosing to live them.
2) Beliefs held due to morals and values; “if you don’t stand for something, then you will fall for anything”. Morals and values sorta allow you to set your left and right limits.
3). Staying flexible; we know that life changes every second, of the hour, of the day. Granted, you can plan out your day in its entirety, but when something happens, all your plans are either shifted or cancelled. Being flexible allows you to continue to built resiliency; its like that muscle that gets stronger and stronger over time.
4). Believing that life has meaning; No explanation needed!
Building resiliency is like a weight loss regime. You have to eat right, exercise, consume proper amount of water, get restful sleep, and be motivated. To build resiliency, one needs to be optimistic, reshape your views, know that not everything is your fault, be a friend that you want to have, understand that small levels of stress is normal, and be willing to challenge yourself. Most importantly, you have to be able to recover when faced with negative change and resistance. Not allowing it to win is the quickest way to build resistance which builds resilience.