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I'm delighted to welcome guest blogger and executive coach Salma El-Shurafa. While her article is focused primarily on building professional resilience for dealing with the volatility in today's workplace, I felt her tactics were also applicable to all of us who feel bruised and battered by life's uncertainties and turmoil. I hope you'll chime in to share your own strategies for staying calm in a world that seems to be going crazy.


We must start building resilience

The world has become very unpredictable, and many people struggle to create continuity for the life they are accustomed to. In some cultures, adult courses and classes are vastly popular, because professionals and homemakers want to pursue different studies to develop coping skills that can provide continuity to their lives. They enjoy learning from someone who’s already an expert and using what they have learned to move their life forward.

That is one smart tactic, especially in this volatile era in which you’re not sure if the company you’re working for will still be around in the next year or if you’ll still have a job in the next few months. Growing your accomplishments in different areas of your life will provide you other things to fall back on, so if your company goes bust or you get sacked due to downsizing, or if your environment or circumstances change, you can easily bounce back and forge ahead.

Developing resilience is definitely a must in an uncertain world and we have here six power tactics that will help you develop it.

1.  Shift your consciousness from emotion to intelligence.

When you want to bounce back from life-altering situations, you need to get hold of your emotions and let intelligence take over. You can’t let your feelings prevent you from thinking clearly. However, if you need to “hurt,” don’t deprive yourself of this essential step to healing; just make sure you don’t feel sad for a long time.

2.  Constantly remind yourself that all challenges are temporary.

No matter how difficult certain situations in life may get, they all will pass. Some problems may take longer to get resolved than others, but you can take comfort knowing that one day, all the knots will come undone. Just be patient and be open to the various solutions life will direct your way.

3.  Ask for help.

You are unlikely to be the first person to have ever experienced whatever you’re going through. Others working through—or having solved— the same problem can provide you with possible solutions. Reach out to people who are known problem solvers. They can guide you toward the right path. For instance, if your business is in a bleak period and you can’t see light on the horizon, get a business coach. This professional can help analyze what your company is going through and provide a different perspective. Most of the time, that’s all you really need to get back on track – a different perspective. When you’re too close to the problem, you miss the other elements of the big picture.

Or, perhaps you need to start afresh. A personal coach can guide you on your new path. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.

4.  Observe mindfulness.

Changes can be very stressful, and you may sometimes feel they’re overtaking your life. Regain control by practicing mindfulness.

Imagine your thoughts as fallen leaves floating by in a stream. Don’t do anything – just let them get washed away. This practice will reinvigorate you and clear your mind, allowing you to come up with plans to accommodate and adjust to these changes.

5.  Find a hobby.

Hobbies bring joy, and where there’s joy, there’s abundant creativity. Creativity is required in developing resilience. People who are creative are more focused on solutions and taking action. They don’t waste time just wallowing in doubt and self-pity.

The nice thing about hobbies is wherever life takes you, you can keep pursuing them, giving you a good measure of continuity.

6.  Encourage yourself.

Don’t wait for other people to boost your confidence. Provide yourself with affirmations to uplift your spirit. Consider autosuggestion and harness your mind’s ability to influence your actions and your situation. Encourage yourself and become the master of your fate.

When life is trying to beat you down, make sure you don’t look defeated. Laugh and smile with confidence. Always walk fast – don’t look like you’re dragging yourself. Speak up, because it’s not what other people would say that matters, it’s what you say that’s important.

Get started building resilience right now

Resilience is a reliable weapon in life. Start developing it now, so no matter how volatile the world gets, you can overcome and emerge a winner. 


Photo of author Salma El-Shurafa

Salma El-Shurafa

Salma El-Shurafa is an experienced Executive Coach and founder of The Pathway Project. She is a Professional Certified Coach by the International Coaching Federation (ICF), a Certified Professional Co-Active Coach from The Coaches Training Institute (CTI) and a graduate of CTI’s Co-Active Leadership program.

Salma is the first Arab female faculty member of CTI in the region, a certified Agile profile coach and trainer as well as a Cultural Intelligence Certified Advanced Facilitator. She works with a wide variety of individuals, ranging from directors and managers at Fortune 500 companies, entrepreneurs across various industries, and other professionals.

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