In health and in business, life throws curves one’s way; how one handles those challenges is often the key to successfully overcoming the obstacles to living one’s dream
As a health care clinic co-owner, every day I meet wonderful people whose lives have been disrupted by physical injury. Sometimes that injury is small and, having dealt with the inconvenience, life continues seamlessly. In other instances, the injury is significant and the journey back to health is lengthy and progress is marked by baby steps. When dealing with personal trauma, I marvel at the strength of character and resilience that propel clients down that long road to recovery. It is that quality of resilience in the face of turmoil that has inspired this blog. I have come to see that resilience is as essential in building a successful business as it is in moving forward following a devastating experience.
Resilience has two fundamental qualities: elasticity and toughness. Elasticity is the ability of an object to spring back into shape and toughness is the capability to recover quickly from difficulties. From my observations, here are some habits of people who, when life throws that curve ball, have the ability to bend but not break in the face of adversity. Instead, they deal with the issues, manage their physical realities and build a positive future.
- Look Forward
Resilient people recognize that bad stuff happens to great people. While they acknowledge the present reality of their situation, they do not allow themselves to be owned by misfortune. This attitude was beautifully expressed by my mother-in- law, Nell, a woman who lived through two world wars and the Depression with grace. When beset by a neighbour bemoaning an injustice, Nell would listen attentively and offer her encouragement with her trademark, “Better days ahead!” The truth is: survivors look forward.
- Build a Support Network
Resilient people are connected to their community, family and friends. Part of their ability to move forward comes from having people who care enough to share their burdens and support them through the rough times. For most of us, it is tough to be on the receiving end of a supportive relationship. Accepting that one needs help and trusting that there are people in one’s corner willing to provide support, leaves one free to concentrate on what has to be done to achieve that successful outcome.
- Plan for Success
Resilient people actively look for answers to their problems. They use consultants and mentors and research to collect new information. They never dismiss a possible solution out-of-hand without having analyzed its usefulness to them based on their own needs and resources. They consciously plan for success.
- Show Up
People who thrive are consistent: they show up for appointments, ask questions and are actively involved in their own healing process. They are not distracted by easy, quick solutions and they stick to their plan. Resilient people do their homework and don’t try to get out of the tough stuff. In health, that means dealing with lifestyle changes and following the prescribed treatments.
- Celebrate the Victories
For someone recovering from injury, progress is marked by tiny, baby-steps. One client noticed that he was once again able to kiss his wife, a simple joy restored! Being self-aware and reflecting on the small changes helps foster success. Sometimes one has to recognize how far one has come in order to keep moving forward to the bright future one envisions. Appreciate every success!
- Believe They Have a Bright Future
Resilient people do not give up. The phrase, “If at first you do not succeed, try, try again” was coined for them. They envision their future and keep moving towards it.
I have come to view resilience as an essential quality of survival in life and in business. The same traits that enable someone to deal with physical injury and come out stronger are also necessary to successfully manoeuvre the pitfalls that come with being an entrepreneur. While we have no control over the circumstances that shape our past, we control our every day choices and we can build the practices of resilience.
Some of my conscious choices have been to:
- Live life without a rear-view mirror. The road forward has more appeal than the past. One cannot allow negative experiences to shape one’s future. Let them go!
- Surround myself with positive people. Being part of an NLOWE Mastermind Group has been a wonderful experience! Thank you NLOWE. Building an awesome team of professionals at the clinic is essential to our success. I am appreciative of the gifts our team offers.
- Actively seek out knowledge. Learning more about business through reading, networking and attending as many guest speaker events as possible has helped expand the business strategies at my disposal. NLOWE’s guest speakers and conferences have been fantastic resources!
- Make a plan, revisit it often and track the small changes that indicate success. Keep enough flex in the plan in terms of timelines and finances to tweak it as you move forward.
- Create a vision of success in business and in life and keep it close as a source of inspiration.
Be strong, resilient and enjoy the ride!
Clare is co-owner and manager of Avalon Laser Health, a multidisciplinary health clinic that specializes in the treatment of physical injuries with low-intensity laser therapy in a collaborative wellness environment. Our team of physiotherapy, chiropractic, massage therapy, acupuncture and homeopathic professionals blend cutting-edge therapy with time-tested practices to treat the whole body and optimize treatment results. To learn more, visit them online at www.avalonlaserhealth.ca, like them on Facebook, follow them on Twitter, or check out Clare on LinkedIn.