2020 is not what most people had in mind! As a matter of fact, towing 2020 to the junk yard sounds like a great idea. 2020 has presented everyone with trials and tribulations. Home and work life routines have been tossed into one big blurry blender. Winston Churchill said it best, “When you are going through hell, keep going!” So think like Churchill and begin “loading” your brain with things that will strengthen your resilience and set you up for a much better New Year in 2021.
“When you are going through hell, keep going!” – Sir Winston Churchill
Steps to Build Resilience
Countless studies show that resilience is crucial to dealing with life’s stressors. It is defined as “behaviors, thoughts and actions that allow you to face adversities and come back strong – if not stronger.” Your brain is smart. It is the most powerful piece of software ever made. There are plenty of brain science studies that prove you can build resilience with the right mindset and daily actions.
1. Loading… More Gratitude!
A great lesson from 2020 is the importance of a healthy immune system. It is difficult to be resilient if your health is compromised. What does this have to do with gratitude? There are two primary ways to keep your immune system strong. First, it starts with what you feed your body. Second, it is greatly influenced by what you feed your mind. Studies show choosing an attitude of gratitude is one of the best ways to feed your mind and strengthen your immune system.
University psychologists conducted a study on gratitude using three focus groups. The first group wrote down what they were grateful for each day. The second group wrote down things that irritated them each day, while the third group simply journaled daily events. Members of the group that focused on gratitude were more optimistic, experienced greater happiness and were healthier! Their positive attitudes motivated them to be more physically active. They were less sick than those who only wrote about negative or neutral things!
“Studies show an attitude of gratitude is one of the best ways to feed your mind and strengthen your immune system!”
Some people keep gratitude journals. But you can keep it simple and jot down on a Post-It note one thing you are grateful for each day; stick it on your computer screen as a reminder. Even better, express gratitude daily! Tell a loved one or a co-worker what you appreciate most about them.
2. Loading… Stronger Relationships
2020 also taught us the importance of relationships. Having a strong support system helps you get through the rough spots. A recent study reveals that people with close relationships are much more resilient. People are less likely to become disillusioned and disengaged with work when they have strong workplace friendships.
“A year of a worldwide pandemic, riots & chaos made it easy to feel uneasy.”
Quality personal relationships are also key! Home should be your refuge. It took a worldwide pandemic to get some quality home time. Home officing, home schooling and home everything! Psychologists have long touted that close relationships are key to being happy. It is also interesting to note that meaningful social relationships lead to a 50% increased chance of longevity.
3. Loading… Positive Words!
Staying positive in 2020 has not always been easy. A year marked by a worldwide pandemic, riots and all sorts of chaos made it easy to feel uneasy. So, as you are choosing what to “load” to build your resilience in 2021, be sure to give thought to the specific words you use each day.
“As a man thinketh in his heart, so he is.” – Proverbs 23:7
Your words form your thoughts. Your thoughts become your actions and then your actions become your reality. Negativity is a rut that will bring you down along with those around you. Unfortunately, people use more negative words each day, compared to positive or neutral words.
Studies clearly show the consequences of your words! Hormones and neurotransmitters are released in the brain as you speak. When you use positive words your brain’s frontal lobes are stimulated and this makes you feel better, along with those around you! Conversely, when you use negative words your brain’s fear center called the amygdala is aroused. When this area is triggered it causes a partial shutdown of the reasoning and logic centers of the brain. This does not make you feel so great!
Begin Loading 2021 Now!
Building resilience is a worthy investment! There is no time like the present for building a better tomorrow. Gratitude, relationships and positive words will set you on a solid trajectory for a better New Year in 2021. There is no time like the present to reboot, refresh and reload!
Benchmark Communications offers a range of consulting, coaching and training solutions to help you improve your leadership, motivation and communication skills. Contact us today and ask us to help your team thrive.