If there's one thing that Brits are famed for, it's resilience: from the 'stiff upper lip' cliche through to the 'Blitz spirit' that our grandparents demonstrated during the Second World War, we're good at getting on with it, whatever 'it' might be.
However, as renowned as we far for keeping calm and carrying on, let's be honest: it's not always that easy. When times are uncertain and situations are unfamiliar, it's hard to feel resilient because you don't necessarily know how to be. But that's fine - because you're not alone with handling it. We're all in it together, after all.
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Resilience is arguably a skill that's honed and developed rather than one we (whether you're considering it from a personal or a business perspective) hold innately within ourselves. Much like a stress ball can bounce back into shape when squeezed, so too can we learn to get back on our feet, no matter how hard we might fall.
So what is resilience? According to Dictionary.com, it can be neatly summarised as:
- The power or ability to return to the original form, position, etc., after being bent, compressed, or stretched; elasticity.
- The ability to recover readily from illness, depression, adversity, or the like; buoyancy.
Buoyancy. Isn't that a lovely word? The idea of being light, bright and floating ever upwards, no matter how far you might initially sink, is one that's as reassuring as it is inspiring.
No matter how far you might fall, being resilient means you'll always find a way back to the surface. And guess what? The shore is in sight, people - so without further ado, read on for our tips for resilience.
Resilience Is... Deciding You Won't Give Up On Whatever-It-Is
The first step of developing your inner resilience is knowing what you're fighting for. It might be for a pay rise, or for your job. It might be navigating yourself through a personal crisis, or helping a loved one through something traumatic.
It might be developing extra determination in relation to something seemingly quite tame - saving money, exercising more, cutting out a bad habit - that you can be quietly proud of yourself for.
There's no one-size-fits-all way to be resilient: it's as unique as you are. But core to resiliency is knowing what you're doing and why, as well as knowing how you'll monitor and track the progress you make.
The resilience tool kit:
- Think timeless. Branded notebooks are classic must-haves that are great for sending to your team as well as for generating brand awareness among your customers. And they're postable, too!
- Whiteboards are brilliant for writing down goals that can be rubbed off once achieved.
- A printed wall planner: perfect for keeping focused on dates, deadlines and time frames. You've got this.
Resilience Is... Admitting There Is A Problem That Needs Fixing
Spoiler alert: if there's one thing resilience categorically isn't about, it's sticking your head in the sand. Honesty about the situation - whatever it may be - is crucial to ensuring you can develop the tools you need to make sure you can handle it.
...Because only ostriches can truly get away with sticking their heads in the sand.
Similarly, encouraging your customers or colleagues to be honest with themselves about whatever it is they might be facing can prove invaluable.
Of course, there's no one way to help everyone on your mailing list of colleagues or customers but even just posting them something small with a reminder that you and your business are there for them could give them the courage to take the next steps.
The resilience tool kit:
- Gadgets that will help keep things fully charged. Promotional power banks, for example, can make communicating with your team or network that bit easier as you bounce around ideas.
- Items that will help with organisation: think branded ring binders, printed document wallets and so on that will make working things out and keeping on top of information easier.
- Promotional mugs. Because a good cuppa has been scientifically proven to solve almost anything. (Hey - we said almost anything.)
Resilience Is... Knowing That Failure Might Be A Possibility
In December 2019, the Scouts published a list of ways they believed today's younger generation could develop their resilience. The ideas covered everything from 'spend a night away from home' to 'chat to someone different to you', with the goal being to encourage young people to test and develop their resilience in the process.
One item on the list was 'have a go at something new (and be prepared to fail)'. Trying something new - with the potential for failure - is a notion that can be stretched from everything to a new potential revenue generator for your business to that pasta recipe you read about. Whether it's launching a whole new product or taking a risk with that night's dinner, you won't know if you don't try.
"I have not failed. I have just 10,000 ways that don't work." - Thomas Edison, talking about persevering through failure when creating the light bulb.
Whilst lurches of fear have their place in keeping us healthy and safe, they don't always have to be bad things. On a similar level, whilst our default mindset might find it easier to run through the things that could go wrong when trying something new (we could lose money/the industry might laugh at us/I might waste the pasta), we aren't as good at thinking of all the things that could go right.
Because guess what? You could discover a whole new revenue stream, and your business could become the envy of your peers and the leader in your industry. Even better? That crazy pasta recipe might just turn out alright.
The resilience tool kit:
- They're a classic - and promotional stress balls can prove ideal for helping to alleviate moments of tension or helping busy minds to focus.
- Somewhere to scribble down ideas and work out Plan B, C and even D - our A2 Desk Pads are perfect for that.
- A bottle of fizz. Sending out miniature bottles of promotional Prosecco is a great way to toast your team - even if it's via a Zoom video call!
Resilience Is... A Skill That Doesn't Just Happen
Much like people aren't born being able to bench-press their own bodyweights (well - most people, at least), so to is resilience a skill to be developed rather than just switched on as and when it's needed.
Whether you're dealing with a difficult business situation or a tricky home-life scenario, it's unrealistic to expect to be able to deal with things instantly and brilliantly.
There are all sorts of tips, tricks and techniques that promise to help individuals develop resilience, whether in relation to business, homelife or mental wellbeing. From the 'science-backed strategies' shared by the Greater Good Science Centre to the advice and insight offered by UK mental health charity MIND, there is a wide pool of resources out there that all demonstrate that resilience is developed rather than downloaded.
The resilience tool kit:
- A pair of branded headphones - perfect for listening to inspiring podcasts, having conference calls while sitting in the garden and so on.
- A promotional diary, for tracking progress as well as recording manageable bite-sized goals.
- Something that can be grown: printed seed packets, for example, or a desktop garden. Watching and nurturing something as it grows is a great reminder that we all need a bit of nurturing as we develop, too.
Resilience Is... Understanding That Looking After Yourself Is Crucial
The cold hard truth is this: you can't be resilient in the face of a difficult situation if you aren't looking after yourself.
Whichever scenario you find yourself facing, your greatest asset is you. And if you're not feeling fit and well, you'll hardly be in the headspace to make good decisions or act responsibly. Similarly, if your customers or colleagues aren't taking care of themselves, they'll hardly be able to bring their A-game to whatever they might be tackling.
Treat yourself with the same care you'd show a friend or loved one - if they weren't getting enough sleep, or eating well, or prioritising a bit of relaxation, what would you say to them?
Self care is of such importance than there's even an awareness week dedicated to it, with the NHS explaining: 'Whether it is about self-treatable conditions, long term conditions, or lifestyle choices to ensure better physical health and mental wellbeing, this week raises awareness of the huge benefits of people looking after themselves better'.
(Want to find out more? Self Care Week 2020 will take place between 16-22 November.)
The resilience tool kit:
- Products that can make good nutrition that bit easier: think branded water bottles for hydration, for example, or promotional lunch boxes that might remind colleagues or customers to eat during the day.
- Encourage fitness for all demographics with products such as promotional pedometers or yoga mats, which can be used as much (or as little) as the individual desires.
- Items to soothe frazzled minds. We're talking herbal tea, bath foam, anti-stress colouring books... Anything that will inspire your customers or colleagues to unwind, even if just for a few minutes.
From promotional products for working from home to essential items for helping to keep children entertained when indoors, Total Merchandise has all the branded items your business could need this spring. Need help finding a specific item? Simply contact a member of our friendly and experienced Sales team on 01376 509092 today! Visit our Coronavirus Hub for more information and updates.
Main image via Pixabay.