What is resilience?
“The ability to bounce back from adversarial or unexpected consequences or outcomes on a regular basis. You are able to rebound more easily than not. That means you are operating at a higher emotional state to be able to do that.” -Cheryl C. Jones
The story of Matt and Finn
Two guys, Matt and Finn who both worked for the same high-end paper co in the IT department were laid-off at the same time, along with a slew of other employees.
However, one was much more resilient than the other.
Matt wanted to blame the company. He was angry and upset and felt resentful.
Finn looked at the lay-off as a business decision that was unavoidable in order for the company to survive.
Within 48 hours, Finn was updating his resume, putting it out and doing interviews. He now has a job.
Matt is still in the cycle of anger, grief and frustration.
Finn is more optimistic, happier.
Matt is bogged down in anger and resentment.
Good (and bad) Vibrations
Emotional frequencies (vibrations) have been studied, observed and documented by order of sequence or hierarchy. Visualize the hierarchy as a ladder from low to high vibrations. The highest emotional vibration (the very top of the ladder) is love, along with joy, empowerment and freedom. Under that, passion, appreciation, excitement and enthusiasm. Emotions start working their way down to a slower wave pattern, with the lowest being shame. It’s a very heavy, low and burdensome vibration, along with powerlessness, fear, grief and guilt. These emotions can really slow us down.
We are more attractive to others and ourselves when we are operating in the higher frequencies. We like ourselves better when we are operating out of joy, love and passion. When we are at the lower vibrations of anger, frustration, revenge and insecurity-people don’t really want to be around us-(and we don’t really want to be around ourselves!).
You can’t jump from shame to love
You have to work your way up the ladder to get to the higher vibrations. So, from shame you might work up to grief. It takes some recognition of what’s going on within you and self-awareness to get to that point of higher emotional frequency. You may recognize that you feel shame but it may have been motivated by past hurt and experiences that are unresolved. So, you work your way up the chart to identify and work through the issue until you feel joy and enthusiasm.
Think about how you WANT to feel.
If you are feeling in a lower vibration like blame or worry and you want to move out of those categories, you might want to look at the chart to see what is the next higher emotion. Move from blame to worry-choose to feel worry instead. Then move up to the next emotion until you get to where you WANT to be.
If you are at contentment, which is a neutral emotion and you want to be at hope, you want to intend hope. You want to practice and look for things that give you hope. Intention and practice are good ways to move up the chart.
Wherever you are is fine, but look for how you WANT to feel. When you are ready to move on, you can start moving up the hierarchy chart.
Remember: it takes a lot more energy to live in the lower vibrations. Things move very slowly and take extra effort. Things move much more easily and lightly in the higher vibrations.
Where to find the Hierarchy chart?
Cheryl’s book! Emotional Self-Mastery.
Or, right here:
Emotional Hierarchy Chart
The emotions listed here are in the order of vibrational frequency from highest to lowest.
- Love, Joy, Empowerment, Freedom
- Passion, Appreciation, Compassion
- Enthusiasm, Eagerness, Belief
- Positive Expectation
- Frustration, Irritation, Impatience
- Hatred, Rage
- Insecurity, Guilt, Unworthiness
- Fear, Grief
- Powerlessness, Shame
Back to Matt and Finn-
Matt’s perception was that the company was doing this TO him.
Finn’s perception was that this was a business decision-not a personal one. He had seen the handwriting on the wall. If he were a business owner, he would have made the same decision.
Finn’s perception was different so his assumptions about the lay-off were different.
Matt was sure it was all about him-his assumption was that he was targeted-which supported a belief in him that he wasn’t valued.
We get very complacent in our lives. Resilience is about change. Change has to occur for you to be resilient. Until then, Matt didn’t have to be resilient. He didn’t practice any resilience.
The Prayer of Serenity
“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change
Courage to change the things I can
And wisdom to know the difference.”
― Reinhold Niebuhr
Recognize where you have control
Visualize an orange. It has a juicy middle and a thick peel.
The good, juicy stuff in the middle represents where you have control- your circle of control.
The peel is the area you don’t have control over. Maybe a bit of influence, but no control. It falls in the category of concern, but you really can’t change it. Focus on what you can control (that good juicy middle) and release what you cannot. Know that you don’t have control over everything.
That will help you build resilience.
The Story Manager
We all have one. It shows up subtly in the Matt and Finn story.
The Story Manager is the story we tell ourselves about a situation. Very often that story manager starts super young. We make up stories before we even have language to explain the way things are. Example -if we aren’t fed when we are hungry we might think food is scarce. That might become our story As we grow up, if that story is reinforced again and again, we operate according to that story.
We’re making up stories about everything in our lives-including new ones. For every new situation we encounter, the story manager is searching through our memories and experiences to find one that mimics it so we can easily make sense of it. We operate out of these stories without even being aware of it.
Matt’s story manager was all about how this has affected him and why it happened. His story is that he wasn’t heard and was not valued.
What can you do about the Story Manager
First you have to recognize the story and ask, “what’s that story?”.
We have the power to re-write the story. How it happened is one thing. It’s an interpretation, not necessarily fact. We can put a totally different meaning to it so that it supports us rather than undermines us.
I recommend that you write out your story. Put the facts or key points in. Where it needs to change is in your conclusion. What conclusion did you draw from it? For Matt his bosses weren’t listening to him as he thought. But, the truth may be that his ideas were falling on deaf ears because they weren’t in alignment with where the bosses were taking the company.
Instead of thinking “my ideas weren’t valued,” Matt could re-write his conclusion to say, “Oh, my ideas weren’t in alignment and didn’t match their plan.”
It’s not his fault or theirs. The two simply did not align at that time.
There’s big value for Matt to re-write the conclusion to his current story.
Cancel, Cancel That’s Not the Truth
Easy to use.
With Matt, when the idea of not feeling valued came up, he could have said, “Cancel, Cancel, that’s not the truth. The truth is, I am valuable. I have valuable ideas that serve others. I’ve had good ideas in the past. I’ve been valued in the past.
You have to identify the core negative message and say “cancel, cancel”. That negative message is not the truth, the truth is this. You prove it out to yourself and your subconscious mind and conscious mind that there have been POSITIVE situations associated with similar events.
The Power Moment
We’ve all had moments where we have felt accomplished, loved, appreciated, joyful. If you can find that moment in your life and replay that video over in your head, it will bring your vibration up several levels very quickly. You can feel the chemistry change in your body and move you forward.
Benefits of living resiliently
Increased flexibility and feelings of appreciativeness. When adversity shows up, you begin to work around it easily and feel gratitude for life and experiences. You get into negative interactions less frequently. You don’t allow things to be taken personally. You start to recognize that others have their own story managers going on in the background and it’s not about you.
It’s time to find our way back to resilience, because we actually are born with it. It just gets trained out of us. With a bit more resilience we can be more effective in our lives, have more of what we want, be better at work or school and be happier. And we all deserve to be happier.
Cheryl C Jones is a speaker, author, mind-set coach and podcast host who works with individuals and corporate work teams to quickly get to the issues inhibiting them from reaching their goals, overcome the issues and achieve real success.
Getting Simply The Best Results
The Best Book on Regaining
Personal Power, Self-Confidence and Peace
Available on Amazon
To book a one-on-one coaching session with Cheryl, email her at:
Kathi Holzschuher is a marketing strategist, content writer and podcast producer. She works with Cheryl C Jones as marketing manager and podcast producer.
Facebook: Kathi Holzschuher
LinkedIn: Kathi Holzschuher