Six Steps to Intentional Resilience

I recently stumbled upon the Morning Bridge Center web site and delightfully discovered them to be a resonate resiliency resource for folks. Their page, What is Resiliency?, begins:

Resilience is the internal empowerment of an individual to exhale fortitude back into the environment.

Resilience is not “bouncing back”, it is:

Bouncing Higher
Resilience cannot be self-serving; it must have at its core the direction of the most high good. It must go beyond self.

Bouncing Forward
We are all changed by our experiences of traumatic events. True resiliency contains the component of integrating new information and making use of the trauma energy for growth.

Bouncing Inward
Resiliency has a component of humility and deep reflection.

Six Steps to Intentional Resilience

1. Discover Your Connections:
Personal resilience is developed in supportive environments. We need to stay connected to others who encourage us, with whom we feel that we “fit.”

2. Aim Towards Your Inner Vision
Being goal oriented aids us in developing our personal strengths. Strive to become clear about your vision for yourself and for your life. Then set reasonable goals so that a sense of achievement can be gained.

3. Become Intentional
Empowerment, like resilience, morphs to the environment. Whatever you are facing, regardless of roadblocks, adversity, and other seeming obstacles, face it intentionally and with dignity.

4. Practice Perspective
Practice the art of seeing yourself and your situation in the light of “the past”, “the present”, and “the future”.
We do have an intentional hand in our own history! Life shapes us, and we shape life.

5. Practice Self-Care
Self-care promotes resilience. Draw a circle on your paper, divide it into four slices of pie and fill in
each slice with the following: Thoughts, Feelings, Actions, and Body.

Thoughts:
Am I still open to learning?
Do I challenge myself intellectually?
Are my thoughts useful and helpful?

Feelings:
What emotion do I avoid?
Am I able to manage my emotional life, feeling deep and painful emotions only for spurts of time,
interspersed with humor, compassion, and other countering emotions?

Actions:
Have I fallen into bad or unhealthy habits?
Have I developed a daily routine?

Body:
Am I exercising regularly?
How is my diet?
Am I in good physical health?

6. Speak Hope
It is easy, in this day and age, to find fear and terror around every corner. Sometimes out of our own anxiety we give “little words of encouragement” that are not helpful. Question yourself; ask if what you are
thinking and saying produces a sense of hope. Seeking hope and speaking hope are tasks that nurture the development of personal resilience as well as serve to create an environment where resilience can be
supported in others. Practice speaking hope!

I find the Morning Bridge Center model appealing in its practical simplicity, and in its invitation into greater depth of being and wholeness. Their model fits for me, as do all the ‘positive psychology’ models, into the Wild Resiliency Keystone Process titled The River of Life: Wellness, Hardiness and Wholeness.

Not all resilience is created equal however, as I have pointed out before in my writings on Resiliency’s Shadow; so I am always heartened when I see other folks visioning us toward human models of resilience that are living systems oriented in their language rather than mechanically oriented. Domestic Resilience vs. Wild Resilience was one of my early attempts to articulate the importance of such differentiation.

And on the Wild Resiliency Institute site, you’ll find this play on resiliency thinking:

Has your resiliency got you down?

Are you still bouncing back to the very self you’ve been trying to outgrow or even escape. Are you resiliently returning to a yesterday’s self, to original shape and form, while the world around us spins on and changes ever faster?…

And while I have no personal or professional experience or relationship with the proprietors at the Morning Bridge Center and their resiliency services, their Six Steps to Intentional Resilience is a good prescription toward navigating Resiliency’s Shadow, as much as any of us can. I wish them well in their work; we need all such resources we can muster in times such as this and I will continue to point to them as I am able.

I am attempting to gather a public database of such resources if you know of any and would like to let me know of them. Thanks.

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