Resilience – Am I Just Being Mean?
Yesterday, I was delivering a module of my Leaders Launchpad to a fabulous group of leaders and the subject of resilience came up. It was pretty opportune for me, as it is half term and I have been working from home, feeling under pressure to get things done.
That day I had 3 hrs of training to deliver, a number of potential client calls, amongst that juggling trying to be “mum of the year” (making pancakes, make-your-own pizzas (including the dough- eek), with my 8 and 12 year old being in the house, taking the dog out for 2 walks and prep for upcoming work.
Add to the mix, my husband having a part as an extra in a cool film, so he was out from 5 am until 9pm. A busy day and not really as I had planned it to be! Now, not every week is like that, but every week has it’s challenges.
And the subject today is resilience. So, what is being resilient?
I realised that this week has tested me a fair bit and that this conversation comes up on a regular basis, not just for me, but for many of my clients. How do you hold it all together with so much going on? How do you keep going without falling over?
So, I really wanted to get to the bottom of what it means to be resilient and what helps you to keep going in the face of adversity and, sometimes, overwhelm and overwork.
It boiled down to 4 things:
• Belief in the CAUSE
• Belief in the fact that it CAN be done
• Belief in the fact YOU can do it
• Accepting that there is some hard work and that that is OK.
Now there may be more, but these were what came up for those in the Leaders Launchpad room at the time. If you can really link to why you are doing what you do, then you can keep going. If you know it is possible, you carry on trying, and if you believe in your ability to do it, then you are more likely to start and continue.
Add to it having a process of work that you plan, keep to and plod on with, means that you get through to the end! On the day, we also looked at what stops people from being resilient. Where they had given up when it got hard or found the reasons for why they couldn’t do it, didn’t put the effort in or put things off.
It may seem a bit harsh, but the room really wanted to know why this happens (to all of us sometimes when we were least expecting it). It seems that these same 4 things still apply. If you don’t’ have a big enough why – the cause – then what you want to achieve just never gets to the top of the priority pile and you can easily say “no” to it. Was it Henry Ford who said, “If you think you can, or if you think you can’t, you are right”?
Something like that, but that is so true. If you don’t believe it can be done, then you set things up (probably unconsciously) so that it doesn’t get done. You don’t put that effort in, or you don’t start the thing because somewhere deep in your mind, it is not “worth” doing it as you “know” it is not going to work.
Then add to that, if you don’t believe that YOU personally can do it then, of course, you will do the same. Self-Sabotage will rise up and you will wonder how come that it happened again – you didn’t achieve, you had to stop, or you weren’t as successful as you thought.
Lastly, the hard work thing. Hmmm…. I pondered on this because I don’t want to think I am a taskmaster and only care about “Just Do It”. But, so often, I have seen that people have not prepared themselves for the fact that there is going to be some knuckle down moments to get through whatever is going on.
Now, of course, this should not be how we live our lives all the time but when we need that resilience, we do have to accept that not everything comes easy. Sometimes I see people complaining as to how they didn’t get what they planned for, they didn’t achieve the goal they wanted.
Typically when we look at the planning, effort and just seeing it through, what we see is an unrealistic expectation that they shouldn’t have to work at it. I do believe that part of achieving is understanding that we have to be in implementation mode sometimes.
Like it or not, you have to just get on with things and accept that there is work to be done and you can’t avoid it – you have to do it. Maybe that is my 16 years in policing, right up to Inspector level? The police force was a great training ground for having no excuse – the buck stopped right here!
So, if you mix belief in the CAUSE, belief it CAN work, belief that YOU are capable and then take ACTION, then it is easy to be more resilient, more able to keep going because you are part of something great.
It is easier to keep going when you can see the light at the end of the tunnel. But you have to look for the end of the tunnel or you will just sit in the dark, accepting that it is, well, dark and dingy and not where you want to be.
So, I want you to ask yourself, do you have those 4 things in place? If you don’t, you may find that you don’t feel very resilient, you don’t find it easy to keep going and you struggle to keep others motivated too.
What help do you need to find that cause, find the belief you need and find the energy to take action? If you need to work that through, then reply with YES in the comment or subject line and let’s create a more resilient you.