Building Resilience To Natural Disasters; Aftermath The Christchurch Earthquake.
Natural disasters are one of the most unnatural challenges for humanity and it is in these times that we truly recognize our fragility. Strengthening ourselves in these times is tough and a call for a shift in consciousness is challenging.
By Meiron Lees, Author D-Stress, Building Resilience in Challenging Times
Natural disasters are one of the most unnatural challenges for humanity and it is in these times that we truly recognize our fragility.
When we come face to face with pain, suffering and death it shocks us to the core and we are left floundering trying to cope in such extreme circumstances.
One of the biggest obstacles is navigating our emotions when overcome with panic, fear and loss and our minds go into overdrive trying desperately to make sense out of something that is so random and cruel.
There are few words that can ease the pain of losing a friend or a loved one but there is still gratitude and hope for those that have survived.
Strengthening ourselves in these times is tough and a call for a shift in consciousness is a challenging aspiration.
I remember so clearly the words of Nelson Mandela when he was informed of his 27 year prison sentence. “You can incarcerate my body but you can never incarcerate my mind!”
Resilience takes the shape of many forms and its qualities pave the way for us to see light instead of darkness and strength over adversity.
It is in times such as these that we learn the most to appreciate how fortunate we are to have the things that matter most, family, friends, health and community.
And there is also an additional resource that we can draw upon something within us, that’s so powerful it can change the content of our thoughts and shift our emotions to a calmer place.
This resource is our resilience. An inner strength that enables us to see possibilities in the midst of crisis and optimism when there appears to be no reason for it.
Knowing how to be resilient enables us to navigate the many challenges that lie ahead and cope better with the stresses and demands placed upon us.
Here are 3 key Resilience Builders that we can call upon.
Resilience Builder 1: Focusing on the here and now
Stress can only exist when we take our mind away from the present moment into a future uncertain and unknown.
By focusing our attention on what’s unfolding in the here and now and limiting our projected thoughts into the future we reduce our feelings of anxiety, stress and fear.
Resilience Builder 2: Helping others worse off
Helping others has two very positive effects.
It creates the possibility for a different perspective of your own situation and harnesses feelings of helpfulness and compassion for those less fortunate.
When we help others we feel good, something most needed in these times.
Resilience Builder 3: Choosing to be the victor
One of the most empowering gifts we can give ourselves is the gift of choosing thoughts of hopefulness over thoughts of despair.
Irrespective of our circumstances we always have a choice over our perception and interpretation.
Choosing to be the victor instead of the victim changes your perception of the situation and opens the door of opportunities instead of only seeing a gloomy outlook.
It is my hope that these words have found a way to bring hope, optimism and calm to the many people that have suffered as a result of the Christchurch disaster.
I wish you God speed.
About the author
Meiron is an international author, trainer and speaker and has spent his professional career dedicated to the study of behaviour change and resilience.
This passion inspired him to found InnerCents, a training and coaching company that helps to strengthen organisations in the areas of Leadership, Sales and Resilience.
To date over 4000 leaders, managers, consultants and employees have participated in his programs worldwide. His clients include companies such as IBM, PwC, Citibank, Westpac, MLC, Harvey World Travel and MTV to name a few.
Meiron has also authored his award winning book D-Stress, Building Resilience in Challenging Times in which he provides tips, tools and techniques on how to manage and reduce stress through building resilience.
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Name: Meiron Lees