That stone in your shoe: gravel or boulder?

Challenges can be like a little tiny stone in your shoe.  It’s a bit uncomfortable for a while, and sometimes, you just ignore it, or forget it, or get on with something more important and at the end of the day, when you take your shoe off, the little stone falls out, and you say to yourself, “Oh yes!  I forgot all about that, because I was…”  Some days, you can’t forget about the stone, and it seems so uncomfortable, that you have to do something right there and then.  You take your shoe off, a minuscule scrap falls out, and you say to yourself, “Really?  That small?  It felt huge!  Why was I so bothered by it?”

Challenges are a fact of life
Whatever your business, you need to be resilient.  Most of us are, to a greater or lesser extent.  But, like anything else, there’s always room for improvement.  When was the last time you took stock of your own resilience?  It’s an essential cupboard full of wonderful products, designed to help you to fix life’s inevitable challenges.

Resilience stock-take
Ask yourself, and be brutally honest, how satisfied you are, on a scale of 1-10 with the following:

  • Your physical well-being
  • Your mental well-being
  • Your friendship groups
  • Your communication skills
  • Your empathy
  • Your self compassion
  • Your confidence and self-esteem

There are other facets to resilience too, but these 7 are a good starting point.  Are there any key areas of stock which need topping up?  How might you plan to do that?  We often audit available personal “stock” at the beginning of a new year, and make promises about what we’ll take up, give up, do more of and it might be helpful to categorise your plans for this year to see where they fit in terms of building your resilience.

You come first

You’re important.  It’s important to build your resilience, and to carry out your regular stock-take, to make sure you can be effective in the multiple roles you are bound to have in your life.  Start by choosing just one or two areas, and identify the smallest step you could take to start making an impact on your own resilience in those areas.

Maybe this might involve giving something up.  Let’s take what some call “areas for development”, aka the stuff you’re not so good at.  Is it really worth your precious time, not to mention potential stress and frustration, to drive yourself to learn and do something you hate, and are simply not cut out to do?  How much more fulfilled would you be if you used your strengths?  Consider delegating, or outsourcing when you can.  Or just say, “no” (have a look at “No.” Befriend it and use it)

For more information about a Resilience Audit, look here.  And consider what you could do to improve your general wellbeing.  Those stones in your shoe won’t magically disappear, but resilience is your  well-stocked cupboard, full of products to help you deal with them. 




About Marianna Beckwith