Building Resilience

Person trying hard to move weights

Building Resilience

Person moving weights with a lot of effort


Resilience is about coming out of a stressful situation able to function.  Resilience allows a person to rebound from adversity as a strengthened and more resourceful person.

Resilience is best understood as a process. It is often mistakenly assumed to be a characteristic, an idea more commonly referred to as "resiliency".

Resilience involves being flexible and adaptive to changing circumstances.  It also requires balance.  

For instance: 

Allowing yourself experience strong emotions, and also acknowledging when you may need to avoid experiencing them to continue functioning. Remember, resilience is about recovery not avoidance.

Taking action to deal with your problems, to perform the task of daily living, and also ensuring you have enough rest, leisure and enjoyable activities.

Spending time with friends and family; building positive relationships which can buffer you from the most trying times.

The American Psychological Association suggests "10 Ways to Build Resilience", which are:
1.    to maintain good relationships with close family members, friends and others;
2.    to avoid seeing crises or stressful events as unbearable problems;
3.    to accept circumstances that cannot be changed;
4.    to develop realistic goals and move towards them;
5.    to take decisive actions in adverse situations;
6.    to look for opportunities of self-discovery after a struggle with loss;
7.    to develop self-confidence;
8.    to keep a long-term perspective and consider the stressful event in a broader context;
9.    to maintain a hopeful outlook, expecting good things and visualizing what is wished;
10.    to take care of one's mind and body, exercising regularly, paying attention to one's own needs and feelings.

For assistance building your resilience your EAP can help.. 



1.    Masten, A.S. (1994). "Resilience in individual development: Successful adaptation despite risk and adversity", pp. 3–25 in M. Wang & E. Gordon (Eds.), Risk and resilience in inner city America: challenges and prospects. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum, ISBN 080581325X.
2.    University of Gothenburg. "Partner Relationship As A Buffer Against Stress." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 June 2009. <>.


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