As I wrote about in last weeks blog, emotional resilience is an important part of any business leaders armoury. It can help you immensely in working towards your goals and inspiring your team to succeed. However, just talking about its importance is not enough, how does one develop this skill and how can one hold onto it?
Developing emotional resilience is a bit of a long term project. It is much more about habits than anything else. It is not a quick fix but with all that effort comes many lasting rewards. You can ensure that you present your best self in any given situation. So how can you improve your emotional resilience? Well here are 4 ways you can develop it and keep it.
Now this often sounds like just being unrealistic. In difficult circumstances you lose the sense of what is actually going on in favour of more unrealistic ideas. Well I can definitely relate to this but when I am referring to being optimistic here it is all about a balance between realism and optimism. Truly resilient people who need to survive the harshest situations and still accomplish goals (like POWs and Special Forces units) balance a positive outlook with a realistic view of the world.
People with this world view do not ignore those negative aspects of a problem. They focus on these aspects in so far as much they help them work towards a solution. Unlike pessimists, they do not get bogged down in these details. The see problems as something that can be solved. Always.
2. Face Your Fears
Neuroscience has helped show us that by facing your fears you can increase your resilience. If you take on the things that you fear it ends up diminishing it. If you run away from them it only makes the fear stronger.
In order to get rid of a fear-conditioned memory, you must be exposed to the thing that you are afraid of within a safe environment. Then over time this will create a new memory which is not shrouded in fear.
Exposing yourself to your fears will allow you to develop a deeper level of emotional resilience in your daily life.
3. Maintain your Fitness
I am sure you have heard the phrase healthy body, healthy mind, well there is a lot of truth in that. By keeping fit you keep your energy levels high which allows you to stay concentrated, in the moment and able to stay in a helpful mindset for more of the day.
4. Keep your Brain Strong
By this I am not talking about those brain training apps on your phone, I am talking about something a little more long term. Being a lifelong learner is heavily related to having strong emotional resilience. It opens you up to new learnings about the world and thereby helping you develop new perspectives that allow you to react to the things life throws your way.
Lifelong learning is associated with a range of health outcomes; well-being, protection and recovery from mental health difficulties, and the capacity to cope with potentially stress-inducing circumstances; … self-esteem, self-efficacy, a sense of purpose and hope, competences, and social integration. All these benefits add up to an extremely high level of emotional resilience.
Try adopting these techniques and habits in your daily life then see how they improve your ability to stay at your best in your daily life. Emotional resilience is a skill that is becoming more and more needed in modern businesses, it may be worth your time to take a look at how you can improve yours.