By Will Trevor, Excelsior College
There have been plenty of newspaper columns, courses, and self-help books, which promise to deliver that elusive “secret of success,” but psychologists tend to agree that, among other things, the key to success for individuals, managers, entrepreneurs, or students, often resides in the ability to develop resilience.
Fortunately, science tells us that resilience is not just a fixed personality trait that is possessed by only a select few. Instead it is a set of behaviors and actions that anyone of us can learn and develop to face a set of circumstances. To help us develop those behaviors, the American Psychological Association (APA), has, after extensive research, developed a 10-point plan to assist in building resilience:
#1: Make Connections – Forge valuable relationships, whether that is with family, friends, colleagues or others in the community.
#2: Avoid Seeing Crises as Insurmountable – Don’t see the present situation as extending into the future, instead focus on a better tomorrow, beyond your current circumstances. One day at a time.
#3: Accept Change – Acknowledge that change is as constant as the seasons, so embrace it and work with it.
#4: Develop Realistic Goals – If you don’t know what you want, or where you are going, then you need to develop some realistic and achievable goals to work towards. Goal-directed behavior is a hallmark of successful people.
#5: Take Decisive Action – When adversity comes calling, do not bury your head in the sand. Instead seek advice and help from your connections, if necessary, but make sure that you take actions to address it, rather than ignore it.
#6: Embrace Self-discovery – At times of loss we often find out more about ourselves than when
things are going well. Embrace it and take the opportunity to grow and develop as a person. As they say, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.”
#7: Trust Yourself – Nurture a more positive attitude towards your own abilities and instincts, so you are less inclined to doubt yourself.
#8: Keep Perspective – Take a longer view of what has happened and don’t feel inclined to make more inconsequential things bigger than they really are. “Don’t sweat the small stuff.”
#9: Stay Hopeful – Retain a positive and hopeful outlook. Attitudes breed behavior, so if you adopt a pessimistic outlook, then you are going to see nothing but negativity around you. Remember, “misery likes a crowd.”
#10: Take Care of Yourself – Keep physically and mentally fit. Take regular and modest exercise and challenge your brain.
About the author:
Will Trevor is the Faculty Program Director for Marketing at Excelsior College.
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