June 13, 2021

Resilience: our shield against adversities

During the modern times of uncertainty, rapidity and interminable as well as bottomless changes, a sense of insecurity is often created. The technological complexity, the existing socio-economic problems of contemporary society and the unexpected incidents that arise, provoke upheavals and complicate people’s living conditions. The generalized situation of social detachment, isolation and intense restriction we experience, especially today, modifies our reality and disrupts our balance outright. Not to mention that it's a common place that during our lifetime we will encounter several obstacles, difficulties and changes. Our ability to cope with them, to manage to bypass all the difficulties and to emerge more powerful is embodied in the magic notion of Resilience.

Resilience derives from the Latin term resilire (= the ability to recover, recoil) and is defined as the ability to positively adapt to adversities and to recover from them. People that cultivate this ability attempt to preserve their physical and mental health, to easily adapt to the new conditions, to be flexible and to cope with the current issues efficiently. But how can anyone attempt to adapt positively and to resist the harsh coincidences? The answer to this question is hidden behind the existence of factors in people’s life that function as protectors and can significantly affect their resilience. More specifically, the resilient mentality is a dynamic process, an acquired characteristic that can be cultivated. The creation of a stable and healthy supportive framework, the offering to the community and volunteering can contribute to the formation of a positive attitude and elimination of the obstacles.

However, the cornerstone to fortify ourselves towards adversities is to give meaning to every single day and moment of our lives and to give it a positive sign. To focus our attention on our goals, to gaze at our future with hope and to be anxious about our abilities, which are about to emerge in front of us. The creation of a positive self-image and the existence of an inner control center may turn out to be crucial to the construction of a powerful durable resilient personality. The focus on our positive aspects and the faith in our self-efficiency, i.e. our ability to deal with all kinds of situations and to have control over our own life are the main pillars that help us in coping with the difficulties and regenerate through them.

Let’s consider the difficulties as a useful and integral part of life, a trigger for a holistic reform of ourselves, a motive for expelling all that keep us behind and for embracing new ways of existence. The gist is concealed in preserving the prior experiences of overcoming adversities as a guide and companion with the purpose of managing to cope with new challenges and to evolve. The goal is to adopt optimism and to focus on whatever makes us feel alive, on activities that promote our health, that make us feel complete, that cover our needs and touch our emotions. Consequently, let’s not focus on the problems but on the solutions and let’s consider the obstacles as opportunities. After all, the key to resilience lies in overcoming self-pity and hang-ups about our problems and in turning our attention to action, to what we can do to intercept them.

Translated by Panagiota Ioannidou

Reviewed by Maro Karipsiadi

Photography by Polina Vasilikou

Athina Douma

Psychologist in the making, collects moments, consumed in internal pursuits, and loves photos that evoke emotions. She walks a tightrope between spontaneity and introversion, simplicity and complexity. She speaks a little, but writes a lot. She hopes to bring out her own perspective through writing.

Panagiota Ioannidou (she/her)

A chocoholic vegetarian from Thessaloniki that fell in love at first sight with the English language. She has a mind full of poems trapped in a ballerina’s body. Torn between a night walker and an early bird. Devoted to special needs children’s self-expression through dancing. In times of darkness, she keeps searching for inspiration, warm hugs, long journeys and her dog’s kiss.

Maro Karipsiadi (she/her).

Law student at AUTH but will definitely break Monopoly rules. Her favourite form of expression is music and she believes that anything is possible if you work hard for it, unless you want a bite of her burger.

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