At the start of a new year, I take some time to reflect on the year before and tap into the energy of the year ahead.
What did I create, learn, and not yet complete? What would I like to lean into, master, give focus to, and be intentional about?
For the last several years, I have chosen a word to act as a compass, or guiding intention, for the upcoming months. Sometimes the word comes to me immediately. Other times, it pops into my head randomly or is inspired by something I experience in the world.
Recently, I was reminded of little toys I used to play with called Weebles. They were tiny people with rounded bottoms instead of legs. Their slogan was, “Weebles wobble, but they don’t fall down.”
This year, I will be channeling my inner Weeble and practicing resilience.
I invite you to join me and this is why…
For those of us without a crystal ball, life can take unexpected twists and turns. While we cannot control every outcome, the way we navigate and respond to life’s ups and downs is within our influence.
Resilience is the ability to bounce back in the face of challenges and setbacks. It allows us to thrive despite adversity. The more resilient we are able to be, the more effective we become at adapting to unforeseen situations and the less we are negatively affected by disruption and change.
Without resilience, we are more likely to experience low mental fitness and our wellbeing can suffer. In fact, there is a direct correlation between our ability to rebound from or adapt to, a situation and the level of stress we experience. Greater resilience means coping more effectively in the face of challenge, quicker recovery, and less overall stress when things go sideways.
How do we make like a Weeble and develop resilience? We begin with perspective and an adaptable mindset, a.k.a. a growth mindset. This means learning to embrace challenges as an opportunity for growth, versus seeing them as threats to avoid. Setbacks become temporary and solvable, even if an end is not in sight and a solution is not yet visible. The big idea here is that, with time, effort, and perseverance, positive outcomes are possible and each new experience can help the next one to be easier.
This requires both mental and emotional flexibility. Mentally, when we allow ourselves to have a more open mindset, we can be more creative in how we approach what comes our way. Getting curious about the situation and looking at what else might be possible, means shifting focus to solutions, instead of getting stuck on the problem itself. When we trade mental and emotional rigidity for greater flexibility, we open ourselves up to new alternatives.
This, paired with setting realistic expectations, sets us up for a more winnable game, as we pursue goals and maneuver through various demands. Getting to know yourself is key, so you can assess your abilities objectively, take into account external influences, and keep your eyes open for potential pitfalls.
Knowing your strengths and opportunities for growth makes it easier to determine who and/or what you might need to recruit to assist you in whatever you are facing. Like with any new practice, or behavior, when we build strong social connections in parallel, we increase our capacity for success. Though the vein of rugged individualism runs deep in our culture, we are social beings and are not meant to shoulder everything on our own. We can take responsibility for ourselves and our actions, while also asking for, and receiving, assistance, instead of just giving it to others.
The more we are able to bend without breaking, and shift gears without grinding to a halt, the more we are able to ride the waves of life without interruption. Developing resilience is certainly an art, meaning it relies on our creative imagination and interpretation. Failure only exists if you stop before reaching your destination and falling down only counts if you stay down.
Cheers to being resilient in 2024. It is likely we will wobble from time to time, but we don’t have to fall down. If you could use support in setting your course for the new year, developing resilience, and channeling your inner Weeble, Coach Rebecca has your back. Visit RebeccaBoswell.com/Connect to schedule a free consult and get started.
Developing resilience is certainly an art, meaning it relies on our creative imagination and interpretation.