Resilience is our capacity to recover quickly from difficulties. Many of us feel we are resilient when actually we are suppressing the stuff we don’t want to feel.
Say you grew up with all of the privileges in the world. Your needs were met, you went to summer camps and learned how to connect with nature and be a leader, you went to a great school…...
But, your environment was very controlled. There wasn’t a lot of room to speak up if you didn’t agree with something. You couldn’t express yourself when you felt angry or misunderstood, without punishment. For safety, you learned to suppress. You might have had every opportunity to build resilience, but your environment created barriers.
Now, as an adult, you might feel anxious, controlling, seek perfection, overwhelmed, or never good enough. You might be really hard on yourself when you make mistakes.
Building resilience is something we need to work on as adults. The good news is, we can! I am a living example of this.
Let’s talk about children. We know that environment and circumstances impact our ability to be resilient. COVID has certainly shown us that we all need to be practicing things that promote resilience right now, especially our children.
Social-emotional learning plays a critical role in resilience. We know that understanding our difficult emotions is step one to bouncing back. Sounds simple, but learning how to tune into our emotions, especially the ones we have stuffed for so long, takes work.
If you have experienced emotional meltdowns, depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive stuff, or even felt like you have had a breakthrough during the pandemic, this is your cue to DIG DEEPER. There is work to do. Even though it’s scary, what comes out on the other side is you having a better understanding of yourself, your emotions, and knowing that YOU ARE STRONG ENOUGH.
At Kind Mind, we want to help build environments (HOMES and SCHOOLS ) where resilience is nurtured. We use everyday practices that shift the way participants feel about themselves and build compassionate communities.
This Week’s Practice:
- Every morning, think about one simple act of kindness you can offer
- Say out loud, three positive affirmations to yourself
- Notice when you are being hard on yourself, and show yourself kindness
In the classroom & at home:
- Create a class or home project for the week (the Compassion/Kindness Tree is a wonderful visual for this project, included in the Classroom Resilience Toolkit):
- Each child THINKS of one kind thing they will do that day (offer examples, smile at the bus driver, thank the lunch crew, offer a hug to a friend, draw a picture for someone)
- Each child NOTICES acts of kindness
- Say aloud your Daily Affirmations, together as a class
This week, practice resilience in these simple ways:
Find simple ways to be kind (smile, eye contact, help, include, invite)
Pay attention to your emotions
Say daily affirmations