Resiliency and Grit are learned behaviors that enable us to not only survive, but thrive in the face of adversity. This is your 7th of 14 daily messages, each containing an exercise designed to strengthen your development of these two key skills. Keep a journal, record your reflections and chronicle your growth.
In attempting to define the essence of grit, Angela Duckworth discovered that grit can be related to how much you can inspire yourself, access your passion, and sustain your motivation. So how is this different from resilience? Resilience involves the ability to get back up when you’ve been knocked down or to come back fighting stronger after a loss.
Grit and Resilience are two deeply entwined character traits. The subtle difference seems to be that resilience is the optimism to continue when times are tough and you’ve experienced some failures, or when others see continuing as futile or impossible. Grit is the drive that keeps you on a difficult task over a sustained period of time. The good news is our stores of grit and resilience are not fixed; they can be expanded through our habits and choices. Here are seven to get you started:
- Adopt a Growth Mindset – When we have a growth mindset (this is a mindset that will perceive a challenge as an opportunity to learn rather than an obstacle to overcome), we respond with constructive thoughts and behaviors that reflect persistence rather than defeat.
- Embrace Mindfulness – Research has demonstrated that individuals with higher mindfulness levels had greater resilience thereby increasing their life satisfaction.
- Choose Your Words Carefully – The language we use when praising others affects grit and resilience. When we praise for effort or strategy as opposed to product, we foster resilience and remind ourselves of the personal investment necessary for a successful outcome.
- Surround Yourself with Positive People – Your thoughts become your reality, and so do the thoughts and actions of the people around you. While you can’t pick and choose every single person you interact with on a daily basis, you can be intentional about those you spend time with. By creating an environment where positive thinking and growth mindset are the norm, you will begin to see everything in your life as supportive rather than threatening.
- Adopt Flexible Thinking Patterns – Becoming less rigid in your thoughts and actions allows resilience and grit to blossom. Flexible people don’t see problems; they see opportunities for growth and learning. When every challenge is met with creative thinking, you see yourself as capable and this confidence breeds more resilience.
- Set Goals That Align with Your Purpose – Purpose can seem like a hard-to-define goal. By creating smaller goals along the pathway to your larger purpose, you increase your success and the rate in which you accomplish your goals.
- Take Time Daily for Reflection – When you take a time to reflect, you bring awareness to the things you have accomplished and the path you want to take. When you give yourself time to assess your accomplishments in a non-judgmental way, it allows you to adjust your actions accordingly.
Developing resilience and grit take practice. However, the effort to foster these traits will have a positive impact on every aspect of your life. Why not get started today?