Resilience – the ability to transform pain into possibilities

Resilience – the ability to transform pain into possibilities

Chander Sharma

Corporate Trainer & Leadership Coach


Have you ever wondered why some people remain calm in the face of adversity, while others stumble and crumble? Why is it that some people thrive in the face of challenge and adversity at work, while others panic and withdraw into themselves? And while some appear to get ahead, others slowly drown in turbulent waters of life?

Life continues to surprise us at all times. Sometimes it takes a left turn, sometimes right; and at times a u-turn!; leaving us confused. Even if we pull ourselves up, try and stay happy, it is inevitable that we will encounter difficulties again at some point. Each day one is faced with a laundry list of difficulties, challenges, responsibilities and worries that pull one into several directions.

In such tough times, we normally have 2 options – either let the situation bother us with anger, frustration, disappointment, negative emotions thereby slowing down our ability to think straight; or, muster all the courage, encounter the situation and motivate ourselves to bounce back stronger than ever before.

The second option is Resilience – uplifting yourself from the negative and transforming pain into possibility.

Resilience – building the ability to bounce back

Being resilient means being able to adapt and bounce back when something difficult happens in our lives. It is our ability to pick ourselves up, rise again after setbacks or painful experiences  and come back stronger.

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People with a strong internal locus of control, take charge of every situation, like CEOs of their own lives; and control every single decision that they make for themselves, for their business and for their families. When they get knocked down, they are able to use life’s greatest adversities as springboards for the next success.

And when you exhibit such behaviours, you become the driver of your own destiny. Resilience becomes your natural state of being. A state of positivity, influence & impact.

Critical need for Resilience during Covid times

The Pandemic across the world today has pushed us with ever-increasing demands on time and energy, leaving us with ambiguity and complexity. We are faced with an environment where everyone around us feels overwhelmed and unable to manage the high expectations of daily lives. As a result, people find themselves constantly multitasking; and therefore, distracted, confused, angered, frustrated and pulled in way too many different directions.

There can never be a better time than this to show some strong character. If you wish to stay at the top of your game in life and in work, it is imperative that you learn how to successfully navigate your way through such tough times. There will certainly be more times in all of your lives when pressures will mount or you will experience pain, misery and you will struggle to cope with situations.

But the true test is when you are required to take big risks and put yourself on the line, without knowing what the final outcome will be. It won’t matter how many times you fall. What really will matter is that you get up again and keep moving.

Moving out of comfort zones 

Let us accept the reality – that we can never grow by merely hanging on in our comfort zones. We will have to own up to the responsibility, get up and move. It is scientifically proven that when you try, fail,…try something else, fail again,..try again… and ultimately succeed, you get a nice kick from your dopaminergic reward system! This is what gives one the momentum, which is needed when adversity hits like a ton of bricks. Adversity may bend you, but don’t let it break you.

Rephrasing the experience, accepting change, being mindful, having a strong internal locus of control, carrying a growth mindset, nurturing supportive relationships, a high degree of optimism, learning from mistakes, a higher self-esteem, a higher self-worth, fast track adaptability, problem solving ability and a solution centric approach – all these are ways to show resilience.

Resilience is like a ‘rubber ball’ : the ability to bounce back in the event of adversity.

A famous Japanese proverb says “Fall seven times. Stand up eight.”



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Ganesh Kumar R
Ganesh Kumar R
4 years ago

Nice article Chander Sharma!