A Recipe for the Return of Resilience

Ok, boys and girls, up and at ‘em! My most recent post was dedicated to the real-world acknowledgement of just how bleak our lives can feel at times, but now is the moment for us to hop back up on our horse and giddyup.

 

Sometimes, the only way we can even contemplate hoppin’ back into the saddle is to go through our standard routines—whether we feel like it or not. As I have progressed through the years, I’ve come around more and more to the conclusion that my feelings about something are less important than our culture would have us believe. We should take a lesson from the Brits—that stiff upper lip bit has a valuable purpose! Legal types will recognize the phrase “pattern and practice” used to describe how one party behaves under ordinary circumstances, such as, “It’s my pattern and practice to signal whenever I turn a corner.” When we are at a loss, emotionally, our routines help us get from one moment to the next, thus aiding us transition from a dark place to a more neutral frame of mind. As tempting as it can be, sitting in the dark bemoaning our fate doesn’t do much other than make things worse.

 

As I have posited previously, I champion the “fake it ‘til you make it” approach which can result in a gradually improving mood and enthusiasm for whatever it is that I’m doing. I smile and brush my hair and maintain a civil expression on my face. Step #3 in this recipe for cultivating resilience involves a whole lot of self-praise. In fact, I spend quite a lot of time congratulating myself for accomplishing the most mundane of tasks—from the polite tone of voice I use when speaking to someone who annoys me to finishing my exercise routine to thinking up yet another topic for this blog. If I don’t feel positive about the little things, it makes it that much harder for me to feel good about my long term prospects.

 

And then I stop.

 

When you are struggling to pull yourself out of a funk, respecting the limits of your psychological, emotional, and physical energies is critical. If you don’t feel like talking to anyone that day—don’t! There’s only so much you can expect yourself to accomplish when feeling fragile or discouraged. Baby steps, remember? Although I, personally, am not like this, I know many people who push themselves too hard, who say yes to too many things, consequently running themselves into the ground, wondering why they are miserable. You’re a re-booter: you know this.

 

Ok, well, I have no idea whether what I’ve written here has been the least bit interesting or helpful, but I hope so. Alas, it’s a formula I’ve been working on for years. I hope it’s something you can use—you’re way to valuable to mire yourself down in misery, no matter how burdened you feel right now. Trust me when I say that I take my own medicine. It’ll get better; it always does. Hop back up in that saddle—a Re-booter somehow summons the strength to try.

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One Response to “A Recipe for the Return of Resilience”

  1. grasshopper Says:

    Yes! This resonates! 🙂

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