April 22, 2021

Where can I grow my resilience?

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How do I handle life’s difficulties?

Do I face them head-on or do I tend to procrastinate or simply ignore them? Do challenges make me feel anxious? Depressed? Exhilarated? Angry?

We all handle hardships in different ways. Sometimes, we might leap towards challenges, looking forward to the chance to prove ourselves as strong or capable. Sometimes, we approach more cautiously, looking from every perspective before carefully wading into the situation if need be. And sometimes, we feel so overwhelmed by difficulties that it can be hard to get out of bed, much less face the issue. Some problems will feel more overwhelming than others, but almost all of us have, at some point, felt broken down by a hard situation, or stuck or hopeless.

Obviously, we all have to deal with our problems at some point, but the more we procrastinate, the more difficulties we bring upon ourselves. Perhaps there was a speeding fine that we shelved until the fine doubled or a time where we stayed in a miserable job out of fear of quitting and finding something new. Sometimes, we procrastinate because it feels too hard. Sometimes, we want to give up halfway through. Either way, we are struggling with our resilience and finding innovative ways to handle these challenges.

Started to innovate but tempted to return to old habits?

A good example from the Bible is Moses leading the Israelites from Egypt. Finally freed from slavery, yet too afraid to enter their land of promise, they were made to wander the desert for forty years. During this time many of the Israelites wanted to return to Eygpt and their former slavery rather than handle the discomfort and uncertainty of their current situation.

Even with a brighter future hanging on the horizon, it felt so out of reach that they wanted to give up. If they had, it would have changed the course of history for their people forever, and maybe millions of their descendants would have lived as slaves. Rather, they became resilient and innovative, discovering ways to push through their challenges.

Interestingly, it was the next generation of Israelites, those who grew up in the desert, seeing their parents push through difficulties, who finally inherited the promised land.

This new generation pressed through life’s hard challenges and adapted new capabilities and capacities.

Reflection Questions:

What triggers my old, unsustainable habits? Where do I tend to give up?
How are old habits shaping my future?
What new capabilities and capacities am I developing?

How can I increase resilience so that I don’t revert to old habits and practices under pressure?

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