We can do it! Woman showing arm muscle as in old style wartime adverts
We can do it! Woman showing arm muscle as in old style wartime adverts

The Resilience and Determination You have in Life

“What’s comin’ will come and we’ll meet it when it does.” J. K. Rowling

Each day, we are bombarded with information — it’s worse than it has ever been in human history.

Advertisements, news feeds that offer us a scrolling update of all the terrible things happening in the World.

The idea of this bombardment is to take you away from your own thinking and get you thinking about somebody else's plan. The result is often feelings of being overwhelmed, exhausted and having bitten off too much to chew.

If we kid ourselves that all these adverts and information are important, we will put off our personal goals, when we feel well, or better, or have more time.

Resilience is a mental tool we have that helps us to bounce back from the setbacks and failures in life. Determination keeps us on track.

One of my favourite stories of resilience is J.K. Rowling’s story.

J.K. Rowling worked in a small flat in Edinburgh, often going to a local cafe with her small daughter to work on her book — “Harry Potter”.

J.K.Rowling could never have known that she would become wildly successful with her book. But, she did want to write it and finish it. That seemed enough for her.

She also studied to become a teacher, so there’s a tip to tell you that she knew she had to hedge her bets on future income.

For her, it seemed that everything was working against her. She married in Portugal, had a baby daughter and then the marriage ended in divorce.

She moved to Edinburgh, went on social security benefits to survive. But she kept writing. She loved the story she was telling so much, that she knew it mattered.

Unfortunately, when she had finally finished the book, which she could only afford to type it out on paper, she hawked it through dozens of publishers who all rejected it. She didn’t quit.

Her resilience to keep going came from self belief. Someplace deep down, despite the setbacks of no money and depression. The seemingly ordinary life where nothing much good seemed to be happening, she continued to believe in her work.

Finally, Bloomsbury Publishers took her book and published it. They didn’t know themselves that they had a gem on their hands. The rest is history.

The personal history for J.K. Rowling will always stay with her; she didn’t allow anything to get her down, to block her, or to convince her to stop writing.

All we know is that she didn’t quit. What went through her mind, everyday, at that time can only have been a battle with herself to keep going.

There is so much about her story to learn from. Most people would have quit sooner than later, cut their losses, wisely, and started another career.

There are so many people who put her success down to damned good luck. Most of those thinkers are still waiting for their own luck to come ‘round.

J. k. Rowling was sailing out into a lonely sea and she knew it. I’m sure it became worse for her the farther she kept going. Imagine the tenacity and determination that she exercised to keep going.

Her feelings were probably an overwhelming mess of doubts and bombardments of every reason in the book why she should have given up.

But, she didn’t give up. She kept going and won the prize that only she could know about.

I am sure that all of this, her determination and ability to bounce back from every set-back with publishers. The time it took to complete a first, readable manuscript, all had absolutely nothing to do with her genes, and everything to do with her persistent determination.

She adapted to her environment. She is an intelligent, and thoughtful woman who could see what was going on in her life. But instead of doing what the millions of people would do, give up, she decided for herself how far she was capable of going into the unknown.

It is our choices…that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities. J.K.Rowling

Writing herself into a sea of emotions that battered her each day, and required strength to overcome the emotional turmoil each time she had to sit down and start writing something that may have seemed like a fool's errand.

My own experience of giving up on a project, is that you can do it easily, but the importance of it, the reasons why you started, don’t go away so easily. Especially when you realize that you were right about it in the first place.

If we don’t use the little strength left in ourselves to be resilient in life, to gather our hopes and dreams together and focus on them. It’s especially when we are tired and worn down, that we can end up living in a self made world of bits and pieces of old plans that are always biting at our ankles, nagging at the fear factors in our brains.

But if you truly believe that you can grow as a human being, that you’re mind is flexible, and that you can gain a certain amount of control over your actions and feelings and thoughts, then you will rightly describe yourself as a self-determining person.

A self determining person has the capability to show resilience and determination, connect those two traits to persistence and you’ve got yourself a set of tools that can overcome any obstacle that stands between you and your real goal.

Throughout the history of humanity we can see that it is a normal state of affairs for people to face up to the elements and change accordingly. This is known as evolution, and in a lifetime of a singular person, it’s known as personal growth.

There are many examples of ordinary people who have changed dramatically. Very often, we discover that the changes they went through were due to necessity, they needed to change their outlook, their actions and way of working to make sure they would be successful.

Resilience is the ability to adapt and change according to the challenges we face.That’s what causes the bounce back.

It’s an essential part of the armor of life. If we fail to work on it, we will never experience the powerful effects it can have on our self-esteem and basic personal growth as a person.

Developing and understanding how you can become a resilient personality is work to do in conjunction with determination and persistence. Certain character traits; determination, persistence, and resilience, support each other. They are a powerful force when working together.

Healthy humans are open minded. We like to find out about things, and hope the new discoveries will lead us to new ideas that help us survive better, eat better, live better.

We want quality, so we are open to other people’s ideas about their experiences. This is a healthy trait to have, but it makes us vulnerable to all types of interactions that can be perceived as an attack on us. It can put us into situations that cause anxiety levels to rise, and self-esteem levels to plummet into the depth of darkness.

If we use resilience to bounce back from disappointments, determination to stay on the right path — not being swayed by opinions and ideas that have nothing to do with our life, and work with persistence, in spite of seeing a stormy way ahead, we will always come through a winner.

Not many people achieve this way of life. That’s why there aren’t that many J.K. Rowlings in the World, there are many who talk about it, but fail to walk it. Most people love the comfortable place they have found, and the security of a “make-do” lifestyle.

Written by

Berlin Notes — Writing about the Creative Art of Living http://seandurham.eu

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