If you really want to be resilient in life, say goodbye to these 9 behaviors

Avatar by Lachlan Brown | March 19, 2024, 11:21 pm

Resilience is more than just bouncing back from life’s tough knocks. It’s about facing adversity head on and emerging stronger than before. And sometimes, that requires letting go of certain behaviors that hold us back.

Here’s the thing, we all carry around some habits that aren’t doing us any favors. They drain our energy, cloud our focus, and ultimately, keep us from reaching our full potential.

So if you’re truly committed to building resilience, it’s time to say goodbye to these behaviors.

In this article, we’re going to break down the habits you need to ditch if you want to thrive in the face of adversity.

So let’s get started.

1) Playing the victim

Resilience starts with taking responsibility for your actions and circumstances.

It’s all too easy to blame others when things don’t go as planned. It’s comforting to play the victim, to throw up your hands and say, “This isn’t my fault.” But here’s the hard truth: this mindset doesn’t foster resilience. It fosters stagnation.

Victim mentality keeps you stuck. It robs you of your agency and leaves you feeling powerless.

Resilient people, on the other hand, understand that they are in control of their reactions and responses. They know that they can’t always influence what happens, but they can always control how they respond.

So if you’re serious about building resilience, it’s time to stop playing the victim. Instead, start seeing challenges as opportunities for growth and self-improvement.

Every setback is a setup for a comeback. You just need to have the courage to take responsibility and make that comeback happen.

2) Fear of stepping out of the comfort zone

I’ll be honest, I used to be a creature of comfort. I craved routine, familiarity and safety. But then, life threw me a curveball and my comfortable little bubble burst.

I lost my job and had to start from scratch. It was scary, yes, but it was also a wakeup call. I quickly realized that staying in my comfort zone wasn’t helping me grow or become resilient. It was keeping me stagnant.

The thing is, resilience is built on the ability to adapt to new situations and overcome challenges. And you can’t do that if you’re not willing to step out of your comfort zone.

Stepping out into the unknown can be terrifying. But believe me, it’s also where the magic happens. It’s where you learn new skills, meet new people, and discover strengths you didn’t know you had.

If you’re looking to build resilience, let go of the fear of stepping out of your comfort zone.

Embrace change and see it as an opportunity for growth. Because trust me, the view from outside your comfort zone is worth it.

3) Refusing to ask for help

Did you know that in some cultures, asking for help is seen as a sign of respect? It shows that you value someone else’s knowledge and skills enough to seek their input.

In our individualistic society, we often view asking for help as a sign of weakness or incompetence. We feel that we should be able to handle everything on our own. But this couldn’t be further from the truth.

Resilience isn’t about going it alone. It’s about knowing when you’re out of your depth and having the courage to ask for help.

Whether it’s seeking advice from a mentor, leaning on friends during tough times, or seeking professional help when you’re dealing with mental health issues, asking for help is an essential part of building resilience.

If you’re looking to become more resilient, don’t shy away from asking for help when you need it.

Remember, it’s not a sign of weakness. It’s a sign of strength and wisdom.

4) Holding onto past failures

Resilience isn’t about never failing; it’s about bouncing back when you do. We all face setbacks in life. They can be painful and challenging, but they’re also valuable learning opportunities.

However, if you’re constantly replaying past mistakes in your head, it can become a huge roadblock to resilience.

Holding onto past failures doesn’t change what happened, and it doesn’t help you move forward. What it does do is drain your mental energy and keep you stuck in a cycle of self-doubt and regret.

If you want to be resilient, it’s important to let go of past failures. Instead, focus on what you can learn from those experiences and how you can apply those lessons moving forward.

Failure isn’t the opposite of success; it’s part of the journey to success. So let go of past failures, learn from them, and use them as stepping stones towards your goals.

5) Negative self-talk

The words we use to talk to ourselves have immense power. They can either lift us up or pull us down. Negative self-talk can be incredibly damaging, eroding our self-confidence and undermining our efforts to be resilient.

If you’re constantly telling yourself you’re not good enough, can’t do something, or won’t ever succeed, you’re setting yourself up for failure. You’re creating a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Being resilient doesn’t mean you won’t have doubts or fears. But it does mean learning how to challenge those negative thoughts and replace them with more positive, constructive ones.

Start practicing positive affirmations. Instead of telling yourself you can’t do something, tell yourself you’ll try your best. Instead of focusing on what went wrong, focus on what you can do to improve.

By changing your self-talk, you can change your mindset. And with a positive mindset, you’ll be better equipped to handle whatever life throws at you.

6) Not expressing emotions

We often believe that being strong means hiding our emotions, especially the negative ones. We put on a brave face, even when we’re hurting inside. But resilience isn’t about hiding your feelings; it’s about acknowledging and expressing them.

You see, feelings are a normal part of life. They’re not something to be ashamed of or suppressed. They’re signals, telling us something about our experiences and ourselves.

When you bottle up your emotions, you’re not dealing with them. You’re just pushing them aside, where they can fester and grow, leading to stress, anxiety, and other health issues.

On the other hand, expressing your emotions – whether it’s crying when you’re sad, shouting when you’re angry, or even admitting when you’re scared – can be incredibly therapeutic. It can help you understand what you’re going through and start the healing process.

So if you want to build resilience, don’t hide your emotions. Feel them, express them, and let them guide you towards understanding and growth.

It’s not an easy path, but it’s a necessary one if you want to be truly resilient.

7) Avoiding tough conversations

There was a time when I would do anything to avoid a tough conversation. Whether it was addressing a conflict, asking for a raise, or ending a relationship that was no longer serving me, the mere thought of it would send my anxiety levels through the roof.

But avoiding these conversations didn’t make the problems go away. In fact, it only made them worse. It created unspoken tension, delayed progress and left important issues unresolved.

That’s why one of the most crucial steps in building resilience is learning to tackle tough conversations head-on.

Yes, they can be uncomfortable and challenging, but they’re also necessary for growth and progress. They force us to confront issues, find solutions and foster understanding.

And while it’s never easy to face these situations, with time and practice, it becomes more manageable. You learn that you’re capable of having these difficult discussions and dealing with the outcomes.

That’s when you start to build real resilience.

8) Living in denial

Denial is a defense mechanism we often use to avoid dealing with unpleasant realities. We ignore the problem, hoping it will go away on its own. But here’s the thing – problems rarely resolve themselves.

Living in denial isn’t just harmful; it’s a major roadblock to resilience. You can’t solve a problem if you refuse to acknowledge it exists in the first place.

Resilient people face their problems head-on. They acknowledge the reality of the situation, no matter how unpleasant, and start looking for solutions.

Accepting reality might be painful, but it’s the first step towards overcoming any adversity. So if you want to be truly resilient, it’s time to stop living in denial and start facing your problems head-on.

9) Neglecting self-care

Self-care is not an indulgence; it’s a necessity. It’s about taking care of your physical, emotional, and mental health. And it’s absolutely crucial for building resilience.

When you neglect self-care, you’re not just harming your well-being; you’re also undermining your ability to handle stress and bounce back from adversity.

So if you’re serious about becoming more resilient, start putting self-care at the top of your priority list. Whether it’s getting enough sleep, eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, or taking time to relax and recharge, self-care is key to building resilience.

The heart of resilience

Resilience is not just a trait – it’s a journey. It’s about navigating the stormy seas of life, learning to ride the waves, and emerging stronger on the other side.

And while it undoubtedly involves making some tough choices and letting go of certain behaviors, the heart of resilience lies in one simple truth: The power to overcome adversity lies within us.

There is a Chinese proverb that says, “The gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials.” This, in essence, encapsulates the nature of resilience. It is our response to trials and tribulations that forge us into stronger, more capable individuals.

So as you reflect on these behaviors and consider how they might be holding you back, remember that letting go is not about losing something. It’s about creating space for growth, for strength, and for resilience.

Resilience is within your reach. It’s about making the decision to rise above your circumstances, to learn from your experiences, and to forge ahead with determination and courage. It’s about embracing the power within you to overcome anything life throws your way.

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