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8 Steps to Becoming More Resilient

8 Steps to More Resilient Leadership

Why Resilient Leadership Is Important

Resilience is our ability to bounce back from adversity. It’s what allows us to recover from change or hardship, whether in the workplace or in life, more generally.

Today, as we adapt to unprecedented social distancing and public health requirements in our professional and personal lives, changes seem to come at lightning speed — and our resilience is tested more than ever.

As a leader, it’s important that you demonstrate resiliency for your colleagues at work. Someone with resilient leadership is someone who demonstrates the ability to see failures as minor setbacks, with the tenacity to bounce back quickly. In difficult times, your people are looking to you for emotional strength and courage as you remain positive and look for new opportunities. They’re looking for you to set the direction and light the path.

If you practice resilient leadership, you’ll project a positive outlook that will help others maintain the emotional strength they need to commit to a shared vision, and the courage to move forward and overcome setbacks.

Help your leaders avoid burnout, and instead, burn bright with our online program, The Resilience Advantage, based on science-backed principles and an application-based approach.

If the COVID era is testing your ability to bounce back, there are steps you can take to advance and thrive. By modifying your thoughts and actions, you can change your views, habits, and responses. Not only will that help to broaden your own outlook and build resilient leadership, but it will also inspire your team to become more adaptable.

8 Steps to Enhance Resilient Leadership

As noted in our white paper, to become more resilient, focus on the following 8 practices:

Infographic: 8 Practices for More Resilient Leadership

1. Develop and nurture a broad network of personal and professional relationships. Personal relationships create a strong base of support — a critical element in achieving goals, dealing with hardships, and developing perspective. Remember that relationships are important for your team, too.

2. Be intentional about setting aside time to contact your connections. Socialization outside of work conference calls is important and should be part of our daily routines, even if it’s brief.

3. In addition to lowering your blood pressure and cholesterol, we know that regular exercise improves your ability to process stress and simultaneously increases your resilience. Learn more about how exercise is linked to leadership effectiveness.

4. Detaching from work and making time for the recommended 7-8 hours of sleep each night is scientifically proven to strengthen resilient leadership. Learn more about how sleep makes you a stronger leader.

5. Whether you’re celebrating success or enduring hardship, make time for mindfulness. Mindfulness fosters learning, new perspectives, and a degree of self-awareness that can enhance your resilience.

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6. Embrace new perspectives, gain new understandings, and apply them during times of change. Don’t hold onto old behaviors and skills just because they’re familiar, especially when it’s obvious that they don’t work anymore. Remember, great leaders are great learners.

7. Deliberately enhance and prolong your positive moods, experiences, and emotions by savoring them intentionally. Consciously savoring the good things in life is important because neuroscience research suggests that our brains have a negativity bias, so leaders must be intentional about reaching for positivity in order to enhance resilient leadership. Learn more about how to maximize joy through savoring.

8. Take time to acknowledge and appreciate small things throughout your day. The more purposeful you are about practicing gratitude, the more things will naturally trigger a feeling of thankfulness. Giving thanks will actually make you a better leader.

Together, these 8 resilient leadership practices will make you a happier, more successful person, both as a leader at work and as an adaptable, future-ready individual.

Ready to Take the Next Step?

Help your team develop more resilient leadership and habits that create conditions for peak performance with our online resilience program, The Resilience Advantage. The practical, scientific, and application-based approach will allow your leaders to avoid burnout, and instead, burn bright. 

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October 15, 2020
Leading Effectively Staff
About the Author(s)
Leading Effectively Staff
This article was written by our Leading Effectively staff, who analyze our decades of pioneering, expert research and experiences in the field to share content that will help leaders at every level. Subscribe to our emails to get the latest research-based leadership articles and insights sent straight to your inbox.

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