Resiliency isn’t about hoarding toilet paper or throwing money at people.
It’s about bending without breaking, and the skills you need to be resilient can be cultivated. But please don’t think training for resiliency will protect you. Resiliency places you into a real dialogue with what’s happening around you. Hang on tight!
Resistance to change doesn’t help you to survive.
You survive by evolving.
What does that mean? Well, our environment is constantly changing. As a species, we are a system, and each of us is a microcosm of that system. Systems in nature have certain resiliency traits. These have been observed and described by ecologists. They include:
I’ll explain how each of these traits can be applied to you and your life.
Diversity means having many sides to offer to a multi-faceted system. None of us does just one thing, or is just one thing. The more varied your personality, interests, skill set, and social opportunities are, the more likely that you will have something in your toolbox that will help you out when times get tough. Can you speak another language? Do you have friends of different age and social groups? We need to equip ourselves to live in diverse communities: they’re the most resilient.
Redundancy is another simple concept: you need more than one of each type of available asset. That doesn’t mean two or more identical ones. But it does mean two or more assets that can provide the same or similar functions. If you’re playing with Legos, two red 2 x 3 bricks are interchangeable with three blue 2 x 2 bricks. Neighborhoods need more than one coffee shop. Back yourself up.
Multifuctionality is essential, too. We can be versatile, or own things that are. A home that can also be used as an office and a source of income is multifunctional. Seek solutions that resolve multiple problems. Try to be more things to more people. Can you be a lover and a friend?