Expanding a little on this week's word-of-the-week from my Sunday Read: Resilience.
Words, thoughts and ideas have more power than ever during a time of uncertainty. This is one of those most powerful words that I'm leaning on right now. Resilience in mind, body and spirit. I'm finding it has far-reaching significance.
Resilience. What an empowering word.
Resilience is a noun meaning "ability to recover readily from illness, depression, adversity, or the like." And "the ability of a substance to return to its usual shape after being bent, stretched, or pressed." And, "the ability to be happy, successful, etc. again after something difficult or bad has happened."
Buoyancy. Elasticity. Flexibility. Pliancy. Adaptability.
First used in 1620–30. From Latin resili(ēns), resilīre meaning to spring back, to rebound.
Psychologists believe everyone has the capacity for resilience and the ability to learn how to build it. The American Psychological Association says: "Like building a muscle, increasing your resilience takes time and intentionality. Focusing on four core components — connection, wellness, healthy thinking and meaning — can empower you to withstand and learn from difficult and traumatic experiences. To increase your capacity for resilience to weather — and grow from — the difficulties, use these strategies."
"People rise out of the ashes because, at some point, they are invested with a belief in the possibility of triumph over seemingly impossible odds." – Robert Downey Jr.
Resilience is not ignoring the adversity or dilemma.
Resilience is being in high-conscious awareness about the adversity or dilemma - or virus - and digging into inner strength, healthy habits and higher wisdom (from real resources) to rise above it or ride through it, whatever is required.
It begins in the mind. Being resilient of mind is about calmness, equanimity and compassion. And, temperance.
"Although the world is full of suffering; it is also full of the overcoming of it." – Helen Keller
The Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health in Massachusetts has been on my list of wish visits for a while now. They suggest this meditation to build Resilience.
It's a Metta loving-kindness meditation or LKM. And, it only takes 7 minutes to "kick in" and to feel the effects. It's very calming.
Begin by getting comfortable in an alert position. I sit cross-legged on the couch. "Take a few minutes to become present with your body, allow your breath to be calm and steady, and connect with your heart." Then silently repeat these phrases, focusing them toward yourself:
May I be happy.
May I be healthy.
May I skillfully ride the waves of my life.
May I know peace no matter what life circumstances
Focus on yourself for a few moments. Then, replace "I" with "you" [May you be happy, etc.]. Then, "they" [May they be healthy, etc] for each. You can focus on someone(s) in particular.
And, I like to complete the cycle by saying "we" for the collective us. All of us.
May we be happy.
May we be healthy.
May we skillfully ride the waves of my life.
May we know peace no matter what life circumstances
"After offering to all living beings, let go of the wishes and, for a few moments, simply breathe, relax, and observe the effects of the meditation."
It just takes a few moments and not only feels peaceful and loving, but also expansive as in being one with the world. Thank you, Kripalu!
I am resilient. Even the power of stating it - to yourself and to others - will instill the energy of resiliency in and around you. Try it...
It's not living in fear. It's living in strength.
Fear bounces off of resiliency because no matter what comes our way, we can get through it. There's power in that. Being resilient is not absorbing the fear of this virus, but by listening to the medical experts and making the healthiest choices for yourself, your family and the community.
And, then living your life with positive conviction. Learning new skills. Finding new ways to build momentum. Forging ahead with current passions.