Build the Muscle of Resilience

people at conference table

Imagine, instead of feeling anxious or threatened by change, you value it. Ask yourself, “If I chose to welcome this change, what would I do differently? What would I learn? How might I grow?” See the change as a challenge to learn something new. Turn it into a personal growth opportunity. Doing this builds your muscle of resilience. You’ll gain strength and agility when responding this way to the
leadership challenges you face.

Resilience is your ability to adapt to constant change. It is a key leadership competency that stems from a mindset focused on learning and growth. Your mindset is how you look at things – your perceptions that create your beliefs. When beliefs are irrational, they limit your opportunities for growth as a leader.

It makes sense that when you change how you see things, you change your beliefs. And, when you change your beliefs, your actions get better results. Recognize when you are operating under a mindset of irrational beliefs, and consciously choose to shift your thinking. Challenge your beliefs and “learn your way forward”. Focus on what you can learn, not what your outcome will be. When you are anxious about outcomes, you become stuck. You won’t try anything new. Know that it’s OK to be unsuccessful. What’s most important is the learning that comes from an experience.

Focus on What Feeds Your Self Worth.

Irrational beliefs are negative thoughts that take away your self-worth. Rational beliefs are positive affirmations that feed your self-worth. They often complete the question that starts with “Imagine if…”

Negative Belief
I keep saying to myself…

Other people are more talented than I am

I’m going to look foolish

I won’t succeed

I’m not good enough

I can’t risk it

I’m bound to fail

No one is going to like what I do

I’m so unlucky

I’ll never be able to do it

Positive Belief:
Imagine if I Were To…

Focus on the strengths I have

Demonstrate my competence

Make the effort

Give it a try

Put my mind to it and prove I can

Learn something valuable

Was honest with my intentions

Focus on feeling grateful for what I have

Choose to try and prove I can

Ask yourself these questions to build your resilience…

  • How do I see myself as a leader?
  • What beliefs do I need to change?
  • What do I need to learn in order to grow?
  • What can I do to embrace change and focus on opportunities, not dangers?
  • What am I able to control?
  • How will I improve my current response to stress?
  • Who can I turn to for help?
  • What’s one thing I can do now?


When you keep track of your negative thoughts and reframe your perceptions of the challenges you
face, you get the results you hoped for. Try it!