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The 7 pillars of resilience – including implementation tips
When people enjoy healthy psychological development and indeed become stronger despite serious burdens or adverse circumstances in their lives, this is termed resilience. Through the 7 pillars of resilience you can also see precisely how.
The 7 pillars of resilience
Because, with the following 7 capabilities, you can master resilience:
… is the ability to look to the future with hope and positive expectations, believing in a good course of events.
Optimists know that they have the strength to guide their own lives and that difficulties and crises are temporary.
… means accepting situations that can no longer be changed and to let bygones be bygones.
Acceptance also means being able to let go when changes happen.
3. Solution orientation
… means, having accepted the situation and put it behind you, looking forward and seeking solutions.
Solution orientation means formulating clear goals and finding routes to realisation.
4. Leaving the victim role
… means ceasing to be passive and becoming active in the relevant situation. For this it’s often necessary to change your own attitude, to reflect on your personality and to become oriented towards action.
Because success consists of 2 letters: D O (paraphrasing Johann Wolfgang von Goethe)
5. Taking responsibility
… means showing initiative and actively applying yourself to achieving your own objectives.
It isn’t about pushing for responsibility, but rather taking on just as much as presents itself. Not less – but also not more.
6. Planning for the future
… indicates having the foresight actively and consciously to prepare for the future.
Resilient people develop visions and then goals for how they want to live and work going forward. What’s important for planning is the choice of an appropriate goal that’s achievable and specific as well as being compatible with your personality.
7. Network orientation
… means the capability to connect with and use a network, i.e. a system of human relationships.
Even just the existence of a network gives a feeling of inner strength and proves very supportive and valuable, particularly in difficult times.
Practical exercise: more optimism
For example, you can train optimism if you just happen to need a short break from your task or you’re sitting in a traffic jam on the drive home or waiting at the lights. In such moments, consider:
- For what aspects of my life am I grateful?
- What makes me happy right now?
- What makes other people envy me?
- What were the top three good things today?
Such conscious considerations rapidly improve how you feel inside. As a consequence, in the medium term you gain resilience. Because daily moments of contentment, which you perceive intensely, confer on you feelings of happiness and strengthen your power to react to difficulties. Ideally, you should note down your moments of happiness in a diary of happiness. That way you create a collection of what fills you with joy and energy. You can easily reach for it in difficult times by keeping your diary of happiness to hand.
Practical exercise: more network orientation
Take a sheet of paper. Write your name in the middle. Then, around your name, write down all the people who play important roles in your life. Now mark everyone with + (=gives strength) and – (=takes strength). This way you get an overview of which people currently cost you lots of strength and which ones do you lots of good. Using this as a basis, you can get on with building up your network with greater consideration.
If you apply these 7 points and the practical exercises strategically in your day-to-day life, you’ll be better able to deal with challenges in future.
- Brooks, R., & Goldstein, S. (2007). Das Resilienz-Buch: wie Eltern ihre Kinder fürs Leben stärken-das Geheimnis der inneren Widerstandskraft. Klett-Cotta.
- Wellensiek, S. K. (2011). Handbuch Resilienz-Training.
- Wellensiek, S. K. (2012). Resilienz-Training für Führende: So stärken sie Ihre Widerstandskraft und die Ihrer Mitarbeiter. Beltz.
- Fröhlich-Gildhoff, K., & Rönnau-Böse, M. (2015). Resilienz (Vol. 3290). UTB.
Photo credits: iStock.com/kieferpix