Over the summer, I had a go at paddleboarding. It looked fun and I thought it would be a great way of switching off and unwinding. I didn’t realise that learning to paddleboard was also building my resilience.

As business owners, we’re highly resilient people. But we’re living in head-spinning times and our resilience levels are being tested as never before. Many of you have reported feeling overwhelmed or having too much on your plate. This reaction is entirely natural as we’ve all had to manage the impact coronavirus has had on our businesses and our personal lives

Times like this really test our ability to cope. Why do some people collapse under the pressure, while others seemingly take it in their stride? It comes down to resilience: our capacity to easily adjust to change and quickly recover from difficulties.

Resilience is an important tool to have in our armoury. It’s the ability to sustain our energy levels through highly stressful and demanding situations, and then be able to pull ourselves together and bounce back, even if we’ve been exposed to a major setback.

This has got me thinking about how we can build our resilience – both personally and in our businesses? Because when we’re resilient, we have a positive outlook and strong coping skills. This helps us to regulate our emotions, making us more empathetic and understanding. And our level of efficacy is also higher – meaning that we feel more confident about our ability to succeed in any given situation.

That’s why I want to encourage you to spend some time strengthening your personal resilience. It’s that old adage about putting on your own oxygen mask before we help others with theirs. Because the more we build our personal resilience, the better able we are to tend to our businesses and nurse them through the coming weeks and months.

This month I took a short LinkedIn course on resilience. (It’s just under 35 minutes long). According to the Kelley School of Business professor and professional communications coach Tatiana Kolovou, the best way to increase resilience is through some simple everyday practices which she explains in her course Building Resilience.

Learning a new skill, be it a mental or physical one, is one of the practices Kolovou recommends because this is a powerful way to increase resilience. Find something that piques your interest and go for it! Maybe it’s learning a new language or how to horse ride, trying stand-up paddleboarding or painting with watercolours.

Regardless of the activity, attempting a new skill helps us to learn how to fail while doing something enjoyable and fun. When we create opportunities to fail and try again, we’re teaching our brain to build new pathways that support a resilient mindset.

In those moments when you don’t think you’re going to be able to do it and questioning your motivation, don’t give up. Instead, remember that it’s all part of resilience training. Resilience comes from facing a challenge head-on, struggling, and diving back in to try again. And what better way to build your resilience by learning something fun?

Are you ready to up-level your resilience skills? Watch Tatiana Kolovou’s Building Resilience for additional advice on how to bounce back from difficult situations.

If you would like to learn more about Denyse and how she can help you in your business, please take a look at our recent ‘Spotlight on’ feature here.