Top 10 Tips to Build Resilience to Stress

Top 10 Tips to Build Resilience to Stress

The military has put a great deal of effort recently to helping service members build resilience because increased resilience or ‘resistance to stress’  makes it much easier for a person to ‘continue their mission’ or keep taking care of their family when danger, fear and discomfort intrude.  Resilience is important to preparedness as well.  Here are Prepography‘s Top 10 Tips to Build Resilience to Stress:

  1. Focus on Your Goal or Mission:  By keeping the end in mind you can work through the adversities necessary to get there.
  1. Develop a Community of Support:  A community that you are comfortable asking for help but often don’t have to ask.
  1. Remain Optimistic:  No matter how bad things get…know that they will get better.  General Colin Powell said that “optimism is a force multiplier.”
  1. Anticipate Change:  By building a mental model that anticipates change and potential outcomes you will be able to better react when faced with change.
  1. Be Proactive:  The Boy Scout motto is “Be Prepared” for good reasons.  By anticipating future needs and taking steps now to make life easier then you will smooth the transition and better handle change.
  1. Increased Levels of Physical Fitness:  Keeping physically fit makes your body and mind better able to deal with stress and reduces the likelihood or the severity of health issues.
  1. Focus on Your Health:  In addition to increasing your physical fitness you should try to reduce or eliminate any addictions and maintain a healthy weight with good eating habits.  Healthy habits can eliminate or mitigate many of the diseases of excess that we currently experience in our country including diabetes, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, gout, and obesity.  Also, get plenty of sleep in the good times and have a sleep plan so that you can get adequate sleep in bad times.
  1. Circles of Concern & InfluenceDon’t Tilt at Windmills:  While many of life’s frustrations and issues may be within your Circle of Concern, focus only on those within your smaller, Circle of Influence.  Tilting at windmills (issues outside your Circle of Influence) will only benefit your doctor…who you will have to go see for that high blood pressure.  There’s enough to worry about within your Circle of Influence and you can actually affect outcomes there.
  1. Commit to Lifelong Learning:  I remember my grandparents doing crossword puzzles every morning to exercise their minds.  Exercise your mind by committing to a lifetime of learning.  Three categories of learning in particular will increase your resilience:
    • Things you Enjoy:  Learn things that will improve your quality of life.
    • Professional Development:  Enhance your job security, professional growth and your ability to earn a living.  Financial security builds resilience when things are good and helps you develop your preps for when they aren’t.
    • Preparedness:  If nothing else you will sleep better at night knowing you have taken the steps necessary improve your family’s preparedness.
  1. Challenge Yourself:  Don’t always take the easy way.  Set challenging goals for yourself, work hard to achieve them, then celebrate your successes and learn from your failures.
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