Acknowledge any frustration or stress about a situation – it’s important to allow space and time for emotions rather than hiding them away in the name of being “strong”. Journaling is a great tool but so is walking and making time for reflection.
Check your reality – it’s really easy to start catastrophizing situations but most things are not actual catastrophes and can be dealt with. It’s always going to be better to be proactive and work out a plan for dealing with what is going on.
Build your support network – resilient people are not “lone wolves” – they have a strong network of support around them: people they can talk to, confide in and get help from. From mentors to family, friends and peers, reach out to others as much as possible. Ask for help.
Learn from your experiences – rejection and challenges can be good teachers, but only when you’re open to learning. Always ask: “what am I learning from this?” and grow your knowledge and determination.
Practise self-compassion – mentally strong people treat themselves with compassion. They talk to themselves like a trusted friend and refuse to beat themselves up for their failures or for feeling upset about a situation. We can be very hard on ourselves sometimes.
A daily act of kindness – altruism is known to boost resilience and also helps us to take the focus off ourselves and onto others. You will also improve relationships with others. So paying compliments, doing something good for someone else boosts optimism skills linked to building resilience.
Being grateful – gives you perspective and helps you realise that no matter what the circumstances there is something to be grateful for. This is such an incredibly useful tool and so often overlooked because we are so focused on ourselves and on the difficult situation we are dealing with.
Three things you are proud of – at the end of the day reflect and write down what you are proud of achieving that day. No matter how seemingly small it’s important to capture these. Perhaps you cooked a great meal, had that difficult conversation or finally completed a piece of work.
Connect – we crave connection and communicating and interacting with others is crucial to our wellbeing. Who is in your support network and how often are you communicating with them. Find the time to connect whether that’s through a call, a message or simply sitting and eating a meal with your family or friends.
Move every day – our bodies need to move – get out in nature, stretch, take exercise, find something you love doing and move your body. Exercise builds resilience physically and mentally and releases positive, feel-good endorphins. It also helps you get out of your head and get perspective.
Get enough sleep – our bodies need sleep to repair, rejuvenate and refresh physically and mentally. If you’re having trouble sleeping create a good evening routine that allows you to wind down. Switch off screens for at least one hour before sleep, make sure the room is well ventilated and avoid heavy food and drink before bedtime.
Practise mindfulness – mindfulness is grounding and calming. It brings you into the present which is where there is strength and where there is no anxiety. Practise mindfulness regularly to boost resilience and to support strength.