Resilience – the ability to overcome challenges and turn them into opportunities

Resilience is a term that applies to materials that have the capacity to return to their original shape after being bent or stretched. Over time, however, we have come to apply the term to people. People who have the ability to recover readily from illness, depression, defeat, or other kinds of adversity and even become stronger through the experience.

For many women, resilience is a strength considered essential. Both women and men need resilience to deal with difficulties in life. But, women often need more resilience than men to overcome traditional obstacles placed in their way, in order to advance in the business world. Too many women, however, are not aware of the amount of resilience they do possess.

Of course, all of us face challenges from time to time that seem overwhelming or that knock us back. That’s life. It’s the ability to get back up, get back on track and get back into the game that requires resilience.

Even though we have no control over some of the events in our life – accidents, natural disasters, crime, illness, the economy, etc. We can control how we respond to these events and we can choose to do so with resilience.

5 characteristics of resilience

A sense of purpose

Without a sense of your purpose in life, you lack a driving force. So, how do you know what your purpose is? Start by asking yourself: What do I do that others value? In what ways and by whom am I needed every day? What in my life has the most meaning? The answers to these questions will help to reveal your purpose.


Giving up can seem like a good idea at the time but resilient people demonstrate the ability to stay focused on their goal, stick to things and get them done. Having a well developed sense of purpose and vision helps with perseverance.




Stay balanced. Understand that regardless of the situation it is never entirely bleak nor entirely positive. There’s a middle ground that allows you to see all possibilities and will help to give you the optimism needed to make things better.


Belief in yourself needs to be realistic to be helpful. Remember the challenges in the past that you have met successfully and those that were less successfully met. You can learn from both experiences and develop problem-solving skills that help to build self-reliance.

Existential aloneness

To be truly resilient, you need to be able to live with yourself. You can also call this, “being comfortable in your own skin.” Truly resilient people need to have this ability. You need the sense that, if necessary, you can go it alone and take a course of action that may not be popular, but which you believe in.

How to maintain resilience

Take care of yourself – feeling good is an essential part of feeling able to be resilient. Eat right, exercise, and try to stay in good health.

Seek and give support – giving back to others is a way to reinforce resilience in your life.

Remain fully energised in life – stay engaged, stay involved, keep doing the things that interest you.

Balance work and life – too much work or too much fun can throw off your balance and leave you feeling burnt out.

What have you learned about your own capacity for resilience recently? I’d love to hear your comments below.

Are you ready to master the art of resilience? Book a complimentary Holistic Coaching call with me today.

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