What does Resilience mean to you?
What our Raggers have to say
Last week we marked the 30th ‘Meet the R4R Runners’ Rag and after an R4R run and chin wag with Benny A, I was inspired to reflect on the responses we’d received. Of particular interest to me was the idea of summarising the different perceptions of what Resilience means.
The nerd in me decided to collate all of the answers, record how many times similar themes were mentioned, and present them in a beautiful, easy-to-read, R4R graph (below). The results mean that as a community, R4R would define Resilience as:
Acknowledging the pain you’re feeling as real and moving forward despite it. Moving forward however you can, with the understanding that whilst it might suck now, it could always be worse, it can always get better, and that when it’s all said and done, you’ll be stronger for going through it.
This process humbled me, because it made me realise that 31 people had shared their own piece of vulnerability. Almost all of the responses either directly referenced or inferred that at some stage in their life, they were doing it tough.
This is an important realisation for all of us.
Today, in a world where we often see only the best glimpses of people’s lives, it’s increasingly important to know that so many of us have something going on in the background that’s causing some heartache.
It’s important to know that pain is a part of life, that it’s not permanent, but it is inevitable, and that we need to be prepared for it. Resilience offers us that mechanism to be prepared for the throes of life in a healthy and sustainable way.
By acknowledging our situation, we are validating our struggle and allowing ourselves to look toward overcoming it. By understanding that it could always be worse and that it can always get better, we can take the pressure off the moment, when pain can feel so intense.
By being consistent in doing whatever we can to give ourselves energy, regardless of what we’re facing, we are improving our situation compared to what it would be otherwise. It can be anything, it can be exercise, it can be calling a mate, it can be reading a book, it can even be cleaning the kitchen.
I’d rather feel like rubbish and have a clean kitchen than feel like rubbish and have a dirty one.
It’s a bit of a tongue-in-cheek example, but that act of cleaning the kitchen, taking your dog for a walk, whatever it is, it gives you momentum and it categorically improves your position. It’s a small but important step and every step helps you become more resilient.
One of the best things to come from R4R is realising that this understanding of resilience is widely held. Reading these 30 responses has shown me again that being resilient works. It can be different from person to person, but if we pursue it as best as we can and be kind to ourselves along the way, we’ll take more steps forward than we take backwards.
Being part of this community fills me with pride because we are collectively sharpening the resilient mindset that will not only help all of us through tough times we’re yet to have, it will also say to others that this mindset works. That resilience works.
There’s no doubt in my mind that if we continue saying this as a community, we will reach that one person who needs to hear it, and we will save that one life from suicide.
Just. Keep. Moving.
And on the topic of community… We hear you loud and clear! The Runners want merch!
We are in the process of facilitating a one-off purchase for Lulu Lemon R4R shirts and we’ll get it done one way or another.
However, if you’re reading this and you have experience in making the process as smooth and as efficient as possible, please get in touch by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Another thing that R4R has taught me is that there’s always somebody who can do it better!
Life is all about lessons learnt, sometimes hard lessons and sometimes not.
Embracing it all gives you perspective and ultimately resilience.