Core Traits of Emotionally Resilient People
1. Ability to appropriately rely on others
I mentioned above that we all need the support of a network sometimes. That’s because we are tribal creatures. For millions of years, we have leaned on each other for support. Appropriate reliance means that you’re not leaning too much, or not at all. There’s a healthy balance in the middle.
Being at either extreme of completely co-dependent and completely isolated will cripple your emotional resilience. If you need to latch onto other people for everything, because you can’t walk alone, you’re just leeching off the resilience of others. But if you have no support, or you’re unwilling to get it, you will erode and break down from the inside out much faster. This often leads to self-destruction, in one form or another (ie. serious addiction, substance abuse, or suicide.)
2. Taking a bird’s eye view
In hard moments, you need to be able to zoom out and see the bigger picture. This isn’t about avoiding having to confront the difficulties and emotions at the moment. It’s basically remembering that “this too shall pass.” You know that everything is temporary – both the good and the bad.
This higher perspective is also part of what enables you to learn and create takeaways from adversity. In certain situations, you can see what could have been done differently to prevent something bad from happening. In others, you can see the way forward, understand what you’re about to learn, and how you’re going to be stronger for it.
This is your propeller. Without something inside of you pushing you forward, it’s easy to buckle under any pressure from life. Determination, or grit, implies an inner wanting to push back, move forward, and succeed. In essence, it is your will. Your will to live; your will to fight; your will to get back up and endure. Strong willpower is a symptom of the next trait on the list…
4. Belief in yourself
Having the fundamental belief that you are capable and valuable will carry you through so much of life’s hardships. What causes people to snap in the face of adversity, or being reduced to a blubbering mess, is clutching onto thoughts like: “I can’t handle this,” or “It’s not worth it.”
Believing that you CAN, that you matter, and life itself matters, brings a sense of importance that you have to figure out how to stick around and thrive. It creates that internal drive and determination to do whatever it takes to make it through. Building your capability and self-confidence is one of the biggest components of emotional resilience, which we’ll talk about in a moment.