152. This is not optional.

152. This is not optional.

If ever there was a time for The Habit of Resiliency to become inextricably connected to our very souls, that time is now.

For tens of thousands of people living across the province of Alberta the year 2015 is not going to be remembered favourably.

Almost daily I hear stories of people I know whose security of well-paying jobs has been pulled out from under them leaving them unsure about what to do next and extremely worried about their future.


And while I personally only know a few of these folks, the media tells us they number in the tens of thousands.


Many of these folks have spent years and years toiling away at the same company, always believing in the myth of job security and are hopelessly ill-prepared to deal with their present predicament.


But, as the old saying goes, “the show must go on,” which for these recently unemployed masses means that life must go on and it is the level of their resiliency that, more than anything else, will determine what both the immediate and long-term future will bring.


Dictionary.com defines resiliency as

  1. the power or ability to return to the original form, position, etc., after being bent, compressed, or stretched; elasticity.
  2. 2. ability to recover readily from illness, depression, adversity, or the like; buoyancy.


I have long believed that our lives are governed by two types of lists. The first is our “Must List”, the second the “Should List.”


The difference between these two lists is best defined by the word optional. Activities listed on our “Must List” must be done regardless of time, circumstances or competing functions. They are not optional.


Our “Should List” lists those things that need to be done whenever the opportunity arises. These activities are optional and there is no urgency attached.


Let’s set these aside and focus only on the “Must List.”


The Habit of Resiliency, and everything it stands for, must become an indelible part of our “Must List.”


Resiliency means:

  • You stare adversity straight in the eye and say “bring it on.”
  • No matter how many times you are knocked down, you get back up.
  • No matter how often you are rejected, you never give up.
  • There is no such thing as failure, only outcomes.
  • You view every temporary defeat as a step forward towards permanent victory.
  • No matter how much you bend, you never break.
  • Your resolve never weakens; your smile never fades.
  • You get up each morning determined to succeed.
  • You are always the victor, never the victim.
  • You ignore those who say you can’t for you have no doubt you can.
  • When the going gets tough, you get tougher.
  • The more it hurts, the more you strive.
  • You accept nothing less than what you deserve.


The Habit of Resiliency must become a non-optional, Must Do part of the everyday function of all those folks whose lives have been turned upside down by the dramatic downturn in Alberta’s economy. Each one of them needs to find the path that would lead them from the myth of job security to the comfort of income security.


Many years ago during a low point in my life, a friend brought me a copy of a poem she thought would bring me some comfort.


The poem was untitled and the author unknown.  Over the years I have pulled out the piece of paper and read this poem hundreds of times; each time it reminded me that there is no substitute for resilience and adversity stands no chance when pitted against committed perseverance.


I hope you enjoy the poem is much as I have for the author explains The Habit of Resiliency far better than I ever can.


When things go wrong as they sometimes will, When the road you are trudging seems all uphill; When funds are low, and debts are high, And you want to smile, but you have to sigh; When life is pressing you down a bit – Rest if you must, but don’t you quit. Life is queer with its twists and turns, As every one of us sometimes learns; And many a fellow turns about When he might have won, had he struck it out; Don’t give up though the pace seems slow; You may well succeed with another blow. Often the goal is nearer than It may seem to a faint and faltering man; Often the struggler has given up When he might have captured the Victor’s cup! And he learned too late, when the night came down, How close he was to the golden crown. Success is failure turned inside out, The silver tint of the clouds of doubt. And you never can tell how close you are It may be near, when it seems afar. So stick to the fight when you are hardest hit, It is when things seem worst you must not quit.


Limitless resiliency is embedded in our DNA. All we have to do is make a habit of it.


Let’s make a habit of meeting like this.



Finally, after months in the works, my company’s new website is up. Please take a moment and visit www.strategicpathways.net . Browse through this site and then click on the “Contact Us” tab or tellmemore@strategicpathways.net  and let me know what you think.


Your opinion truly means a lot to me.


Thank you.

About the author

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