Techniques to increase resilience capacity
How do you optimize your wellbeing levels while insecurity, anxiety and stress take over?
Very few things have the potential to create more anxiety and stress than not knowing what to do next for your living or than being diagnosed with a serious medical condition. Once asking the question ‘what am I going to do?, the gates of anxiety open widely and the vortex they create pushes you in a debilitating state of being.
Not knowing where to is a frightening place to be for many people, especially if they don’t have their base secured, and most of the people don’t have that privilege. There are many people out there in the world who don’t know if there is a home or money source to pay the rent, food or medical bills tomorrow. For those with at least one entrepreneurial episode in their personal history this is a familiar feeling, they are more resilient in the face of the unknown and insecurity, but also for them it’s not an easy challenge.
I remember one such episode, one of too many.
It was Easter like it is now. Too much happened to feel lost, on the contrary, I felt natural in my skin and good with myself, but I just didn’t know what else to do or to try to rise above those very hard days, to build a more steady bridge to walk on. During those times church was the only thing that was open for people like me who had no other better place to go. So, here I was again making a deeper and deeper footpath to it.
My thoughts did not have the strength to fall together in a prayer, I didn’t know what to ask from God. According to my spiritual mindset God is smarter than me and He already knows what I need and where it’s better for me. At least better than I can think of. In many occasions he led me there after I reached all my ends, ideas and powers. According to the same mindset, the belief in God’s existence has no sense if He does what I can, he intervenes only after I played my role. God begins where I end.
Staying there and looking around out of focus, I realized I stay too still, that I don’t do anything. To do something, trying to help my mind falling together, I start praying for all the people in that church, for all the people I could remember and from all the people in the world. Priests, therapists, activists, terrorists, killers, doctors, presidents, you name it.
One of the things that happened was that memories of and with people I completely forgot about started to pop up. Some of them perceived as very significant then. I told myself that I would not want them to forget me the way I forgot them. Why? Because forgetting them felt like arrogance, as if they were not significant enough for me to remember, at least in prayers or from time to time.
In the middle of these thoughts, my mobile started to vibrate. Unknown number. There was no one left to call me for anything, so I was almost sure it is someone calling at a wrong number. I did not answer because I also did not want to interrupt that moment. The unknown number called again. I went out of the church to answer.
An unknown female voice calling my name. Asking if I am available for a job in a film production. She told me how she reached me through a series of people, some of them we both knew. All of them on my prayer list. I felt God worked for me in real-time, a live-broadcast of His work. A feeling that can uplift any person in an instant.
I needed a job like air. Still, I was ready to say ‘no’, if it wouldn’t have been something relevant for my inner callings or if it wouldn’t have the potential to bring me closer to my life vision.
I said yes and in less than a week I started work as a film location scouter and manager for an American production happening in Bucharest, a job involving 90% field work and a lot of walking, exploring and talking to people of all kinds and to authorities, from dusk to dawn.
I had nothing left but a pair of leather black boots that I could not wear anymore because the nails were out and they cut my foot. I put some napkins inside and I did what I had to do without thinking about it. My feet remained a bit affected since then, but hardships come with a paycheck and that’s it. I was grateful I could move forward and keep myself together and on track.
Then, ten years passed in this rhythm, in the impossibility to choose my path or to afford options. Past debts, present expenses and costs for creating a future kept me prisoner in a loop I hardly could escape from. They were always accompanied by anxiety, stress and sleepless nights, moments when I chose to learn new things and solve problems in open innovation to not allow my brain to turn into some sort of soup from so much stress and lack of good enough nutrition and sleep. But to also not let people see or feel that I was not playing the game for a long time.
With time, I discovered that diving in the anxiety and reporting through writing directly from its womb refines my skills and perceptions, burns confusion and brings in more clarity. By this new investigative attitude stress and anxiety lost their power to create chaos in my days. The translation of the feelings into clearer words kept me both curious and busy, many times they also inspired me about my next moves and actions to take. At times, it also showed me what will happen before happening, so I could win time to prepare myself for what comes next and be ready to grab it. It sharpened also my intuition. It was not premonition or some esoteric thing, but a better sense to identify the most probable scenario, an increasing capacity to read the lines behind the script or the design behind the puzzle.
I realized that if I allow ‘lava’ to just burn me from head to toes, if I just accept my temporary condition without despair, it is not burning what it does, but it teaches me what it is and how it works, it gives me information, and naturally it expands my intelligence. It teaches me how to conquer it and rise above it. It teaches me strategies and what particular actions or fusion of actions to take so I can place my next step on solid ground.
To have your mind open means fundamentally to have your mind free of your own thoughts and interpretations.
Imagine that your own thoughts, perceptions and interpretations are helicopter and that your mind is the landing point. You can choose to allow them to land or not. My mind began to open itself by practicing ‘air traffic control’, by not allowing my own thoughts to land and occupy the entire space. This way I could allow inspiration to connect with me and I could also create the inner silence and peace needed to hear the whispering voice of my intuition. It’s a primitive logic, but primitive as it seems, it works because it is nothing more than a technique to bounce back, to help you increase your resilience capabilities.
My healthcare overall began to improve. Pull down the stress levels, my immune system increased its strength and the medical conditions that began to settle in my body stopped their evolution. Some of them disappeared, some stopped at a level where surgery could solve them. Emigrating to a sunny island with a constant temperature and steady climate also helped. I did anything possible in my context to create a better climate for my survival.
I was aware there’ll be a paycheck for those intense stressful years, I wasn’t naive to imagine that once I step on a better pathway by simply improving my resilience techniques, the effects on health of the older ways and times will just vanish. Miracles do happen, but not in the metaphoric way we often like to imagine.
To ask the question ‘How I do to optimize my wellbeing levels while insecurity, anxiety and stress take over?’ by breaking it down to a few words:
I don’t react as my tendencies push me to (with despair). I dive in and report through writing what I feel when I feel, what I see from there, from as many angles as possible, I ask questions, I explore, I investigate. Without interpretation, without allowing my own ideas and thoughts to land on my mind and occupy the space where potential new knowledge needs it to settle in. I channel my efforts towards uplifting my processor and focus on vital actions, not my memory. Writing solves memory problem by default.
Start being well again!