Ten Ways You Can Be More Resilient This Week


Resilience is like a muscle. You have to exercise it a little bit every day to make sure you’re match ready when the moment comes. Here are some practical ideas for your daily resilience workout…

Watch less TV news. By now, haven’t we heard all the stories? There are people whose job it is to get on top of things – but it’s not up to us. We didn’t start any of that, so we don’t need to bother ourselves with the details of how it gets fixed.

Consider someone else’s point of view. Tune in to a radio programme you don’t always listen to (I’d recommend BBC Radio4’s ‘Woman’s hour’), or strike up a conversation with a stranger in the café. When I was in hospital for a long time, it was the humour and insight of the porters that got me through.

Laughter is definitely the best medicine. I’ve been writing a radio comedy script called World of Ball for a few months now, it’s a comedy send-up of sports commentators, and one day soon I’ll get it finished. My point is, we mustn’t take ourselves or our lives too seriously. What makes you laugh out loud?

Get some exercise. No, I mean, really. I never met one single person who walks, jogs, swims or plays sport that talked about being sad while they were doing it. Even if it’s just a stroll around the block. We’ve all heard about these magic things called endorphins, so let’s go grab some!

Then pamper yourself. By that, I mean, treat yourself to that purchase you’ve been putting off – it might be a music CD or a DVD, some luxurious soaps, or a brand new bag. Who never got a kick from buying a new pair of shoes? If money’s tight, re-discover a previous and neglected purchase. Enjoy.

Keep your work life in perspective. As you get older, you’ll realise that you definitely spent too much time at the office. It’s all about balance and you have people at home who need your time too. Stress is a silent killer, and it’s easy for us to feel we have to over deliver at work.

Make a meal for a loved one. This never fails to lift the spirits. You can even put your favourite music on in the background while you rattle the pots and pans. Making something tasty for a loved one is a genuine, loving gift and it’ll make you feel good about yourself too.

Spend some time with a child. The reason we look back on our childhoods fondly is because kids see the world from a fresh, imaginative perspective. Their energy, enthusiasm and love of life are infectious and they love to do even simple things together. If you can’t find a child to hang out with, find an animal!

Plan and go on that trip. You know, that one you’ve been putting off for a while? Where are you going – to your mum’s, to that new town you’ve never got to before, for that walk through the woods or along the shore at the beach? The world is wide open and it’s waiting for you.

Tell your best friend what you like about them. Our friendships are ultimately what will save us when the chips are down, but living busy lives, we have a tendency to neglect our favourite people. Take a minute to let your friend know what it is you value about the way they are.

Last but not least, take five things to the charity shop. We’ve all got too much stuff (admit it!) and decluttering is so cathartic. You get a little fillip from having done a great job and a fine feeling inside from passing stuff on or donating to a good cause. What’s not to like?