Life is full of hardships, challenges, and obstacles. While some of these challenges can have us defeated, there are people that seem to handle whatever life throws at them with grace and ease. These people are what we call ‘Emotionally Resilient’.
What is Emotional Resilience?
Emotional resilience is the ability for one to adapt and adjust to stressful situations. This may be dealing with a breakup, death of a parent, or loss of a job. It could even be a less ‘dramatic’ situation such as collaborating with a stressful coworker, having your vacation plans canceled or anything else that would cause stress.
Being able to roll with the punches, as they say, and keeping going is a truly admirable ability. The great thing is that any can become emotionally resilient.
Qualities of Emotional Resiliency and the Spiritual Meanings
Research has looked into people who possess strong emotional resiliency and found commonalities throughout. With these key elements, we dive deeper to discover the spiritual undertones to these.
It isn’t as easy as ‘staying positive’ and looking at the world through rose colored glasses. Staying optimistic is looking at the realistic view of the world. These people see both positive and negative, seeing the reality of the situation, but choose to focus on the positive.
From a spiritual mindset, this is the law of attraction. Our minds are powerful tools. What we focus our minds on becomes our reality. If all we look at is the negative, then we will see it everywhere we go. Instead, re-frame to a positive mindset. Look for those silver linings. Yes, it does suck that you got fired, but now you have more time to focus on yourself, your passions, and your family. Shift your focus and you will attract more positivity in your life.
-Ability to Face Fears
These sometimes drastic changes and stressors in our life can be scary. Losing a stable relationship or job, it can seem like your world is ending. Neuroscience shows that the only real way to deal with these fears is to face them head on. When we face these fears, like emotionally resilient people do, these fears become less scary and we become stronger in the process. When we realize that most of these fears lie in our mind and all of its racing thoughts, fear starts to lessen its grip on us.
Facing our fears is a great spiritual stepping stone for our growth and evolution. When we overcome these challenges in our lives, not only are we becoming emotionally and mentally stronger, but we are able to continue this path of spiritual development. We are learning lessons with these challenges in our lives, and each lesson allows our souls to grow.
It is no coincidence that the number one thing researchers have found when studying people who overcame a tragedy was that they practiced spirituality. Being spiritual plays in many other aspects/traits of emotional resiliency, from a strong social support system to finding the meaning in what you do.
-Strong Social Support
Our brains need social support to function at its optimal level. Connection with others releases oxytocin, which calms the mind and reduces stress. Having a strong support system allows us to feel like we are not alone and that if we should fall, we can call on a community to help us.
On an energetic level, we as humans radiate from our heart chakra points. This is the point of balance, unity, and love within us. Connecting with others on this level allows us to feel loved and nurtured during difficult times and allows our minds and egos to calm down when we feel this sense of support.
-Find Meaning in What you Do
Resilient people tend to have the belief of a higher calling or mission in life. So when times are hard, they have a sense of a greater purpose that pushes them forward during this difficult hurdle. Being spiritually minded, we know that we have a higher calling and are already aware of this fact. So when life gets tough, or an unexpected change happens, we feel that it is all a part of a greater purpose and plan.
-Being Cognitively Flexible
People who are resilient tend to be flexible in the way they think about these challenges, and shift their coping strategies accordingly. Humor is one key coping tool many use. When we find lightness in a situation, no matter how grim, it takes the severity and weight off, allowing us to better function with the situation.
A spiritual tool to deal with stressful situations is to lessen your need to control. That is what being flexible is about. When we attach ourselves to a specific outcome, we will be disappointed when that outcome doesn’t happen. However, when we let go of these expectations, we have more peace of mind.
So for example, if we had a partner who we thought we would be together with forever, and they recently broke it off, we might feel the loss of control. The perfect future you had planned is ruined. However, accepting this and letting go of this expectation, we can be open to the new possibilities that can arise from this situation.
Being resilient to the trauma and challenges we face in our lives shows strength, power, determination, and hope. Our hardships can shape us into the people we were destined to be. We prove to ourselves that no challenge is too hard to keep moving forward. Life is full of ebbs and flows. We must experience both, but we can choose how we wish to handle the lows.