Show me a person with a problem-free existence.
That person doesn’t exist.
Adversities of varying magnitudes affect every one of us.
Children face adversities. Adolescents have their problems to contend with, and as a working-class individual, you know trouble by its name.
No one is impervious to life’s ever-changing faces and winters.
Challenges will egress in your personal and professional life as a lawyer. Resilience will determine how successful you are when life throws rock-solid punches below the belt.
What is Resilience?
Resilience is the ability to bounce back when knocked down. A resilient person doesn’t come up unscathed when challenged by disappointments, failures, and adversities; however, they stand erect despite the odds.
A resilient person knows how to be victorious and not conquered by problems, regardless of their scope.
Why Do You Need Resilience as a Lawyer?
Do you want to avoid breaking down before a bunch of strangers? Do you want to stand tall while problems mount in your personal and work life?
You need resilience.
- Resilience supports you during hardships. How often do you encounter adversities? Too many times to count? Misfortunes and afflictions are staples to anticipate. The affluent aren’t excused because of their wealth; a man stricken with poverty may have twice the dilemma to deal with. Cultivating resilience cushions the blows received from hardships. Even with guided missiles latched on to you, resilience leaves you standing after the battlefield is cleared.
- Resilience builds a wall to protect your mental health. Every adversity has the potential to subtract or add to your psychological health.A person who lacks resilience gives up, then refuses to try for fear of failing. This negative attitude affects how they perceive and navigate life. A resilient person, however, tries repeatedly, despite untold failures. This individual will likely be more successful, as they look beyond misfortunes to achieve their goals.
- Resilience creates a stronger you. You view failures and disappointments as opportunities to regroup and re-emerge as a stronger opponent. Despite a growing list of disappointments or failures, these occurrences build your determination to improve. You outgrow your challenges and laugh at new developments.
How to Build Mental Resilience
Resilience is connected to your survival. When you build mental resilience, you create an unbreakable fortress around your psyche, one that’s impenetrable and well-grounded.
A plethora of ways exist to build mental resilience, but let’s consider 7 profound ways you can do so as a lawyer.
1. Learn from the Resilience of Others
Resilience is an attribute learned through experience. However, it doesn’t always have to be your personal experience. There’s much to learn about resilience from the world around you.
Consider how a baby learns to walk.
How many times does that child fall before walking? The obvious question is ‘as many as it takes’. Resilience carries the same notion. If a child doesn’t stop until she (he) begins to walk, there’s a lesson to learn. Don’t stop trying until it happens for you.
If you’re dealing with doubts and fears as an attorney with a mental health disorder, learn to build mental resilience.
Are you dealing with issues at the office? How about talking with seasoned attorneys to learn how they dealt with similar challenges? Coy, you may be at first. However, don’t allow pride or emotions to hinder your growth and opportunities to dig into the minds of more experienced attorneys.
Learning from the experiences of your superiors isn’t a sign of weakness; it’s strength.
2. Size Up the Adversity
When you build mental resilience, you filter what you allow to cause you grievance. Learn to size up challenges when they emerge.
Does a situation carry enough weight to stress about it? Who benefits when you’re reached by a problem?
Were you criticized by your employer or colleagues? That may cause some degree of distress and anxiety, but don’t allow disappointments to dampen your spirit. When major problems arise, create a plan.
Maybe you’re falling short on billable hours or clientele demands. What can you do to learn from the situation to prevent a reoccurrence? Can you create a plan to deal effectively with the problem?
Minor or major, no challenge, criticism, or disappointment is worth losing sleep over.
3. Cultivate Patience and Endurance
“Patience is a virtue.”
Really, it is.
Unfortunately, some problems will stick with you. Perhaps your career in the legal arena has taken off. But at the summit of your success, your body succumbs to a debilitating, incurable disease.
Mental resistance is needed more than ever with crippling illnesses.
When you build mental resilience, despite haunting from an illness, your psychological health is protected. When you cultivate patience and endurance, you refuse to allow a negative situation to prevent you from living. You’re willing to work towards your goals even if they take an inordinate amount of time to see fulfillment.
You find ways to deal with new circumstances with your face to the sun, hopeful that although things may never change, life goes on.
4. Be Content and Grateful
Resilient lawyers recognize the power of contentment and gratitude. They focus on what’s present and find joy in having a job that takes care of their family and allow them to do the things they love.
Will the world end abruptly if you don’t make partner or secure your dream client? Can you be happy without both?
This is because happiness is a state of mind, not a show of material possessions. You can choose to be happy, even if the world is set ablaze.
When you learn to appreciate the small things in life, no disappointment or material loss is too great to leave you paralyzed.
5. Be Persistent
To deal with disappointments and obstacles in your professional and personal life, persistence is a necessity.
A resilient lawyer moves forward despite unfavorable situations. Although he (she) experiences regular bouts of setbacks, his goal is clear and remains before him. He doesn’t let up but pushes ahead to grab the prize.
Observing how cats behave is an ideal way to develop persistence. If you’ve ever owned a feline, you know the struggle of getting it to stop climbing in hard-to-reach places or tugging on upholstery.
This stubbornness is necessary to build mental resilience. How many times have you failed throughout your career? Did you yearn for something but stopped pursuing it because failure became an obstacle?
Persistence and resilience work together. When you stick to a particular course come what may, you show your strength and ability to bounce back.
Like trees swaying in the wind, you stand your ground, with posture erect after the storm.
6. Control Negative Emotions
Ruminating on what was or what didn’t happen saps one’s energy. Learn to control your emotions. When you’re level-headed and liberated from negative emotions, you work within your circle of influence. These are the situations you wield control over.
While you recognize that situations are within your control, others live outside of your circle of concern. These things may cause agitation, but you realize there’s nothing you can do about them.
Let them be.
Focus on what you can control. Focus on positive highlights and situations that bolster your mental health.
When you mull on negative emotions and entertain them, you’ll lose the willpower or fortitude to deal with adversities.
7. Accept Your Reality
Albatross-like problems will come. That’s just how life works. Anticipate these. Recognize that sometimes when it rains, it pours.
The quicker you accept that life isn’t your friend, the less disappointed and shocked you’ll be when major problems mount and uproot what you’ve built. When you accept that certain things will linger despite your best efforts, you shift your focus, open up to other possibilities, and work around your present situation.
Things may change or remain the same.
Whatever the outcome, resilience will help you deal with them confidently.
Like a ball that bounces from a wall and a tree that stands erect after a tempestuous wind, build mental resilience. Some of the challenges you face will leave you scarred, perhaps for life. But when you build mental resilience, you grow stronger and get better.