That’s my word of the week. I know, I know…I said “joy” was, but as it turns out, resilience has been speaking to me (or being demanded of me) this week, instead.
I think what sealed the deal for me this morning was reading Holly Elissa Bruno’s definition of resilience: I have choices. I can’t go wrong by being authentic and by inviting others to be true to themselves. When I mess up or fall into blind spots, I can learn. I can recover and I don’t have to heal alone. I think of it as a more eloquent, and more relationship-oriented, definition than the one you find in the dictionary (“the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness”). I like the idea of resiliency being dependent on your own authenticity and within the context of a supportive relationship. The more securely attached we are, the more flexibility we have to pivot, rebound, recover, re-brand, or simply move on.
Resilience is something that’s demanded of all of us these days, is it not? In fact, perhaps what truly sealed the deal for me was not just getting the Childcare Connections email with the Bruno quotation, but the fact that I got no less than three other emails about resiliency this morning. Tough week out there? How about a tough week in a tough year…When Magda asked “that” question in Seeing Infants with New Eyes, she had no idea the complexity that life would through at us 40 years later…no one could…which is why her question is so important. What question?
Are there certain qualities, human qualities, that will be good for the unknown future?
Indeed, that’s part of where I start when I bring the Educaring Approach to new people…the idea that we are fostering, or rather preserving, certain human qualities from infancy or toddlerhood that will help prepare children to grow up and face this uncertain world we live in. The stated goal is to “help raise authentic infants who are…”
Interesting to see that resilient didn’t make the cut…or did it? Hmm, let’s look a little more deeply at what a resilient person looks like. Resilient people:
Have a positive image of the future…they maintain a positive outlook, and envision brighter days ahead.
Have solid goals, and a desire to achieve those goals.
Are empathetic and compassionate, however, they don’t waste time worrying what others think of them.
Secure; Aware; Confident
Never think of themselves as victims – they focus their time and energy on changing the things that they have control over.
Well, when you put it that way, yes, the Educaring Approach really does encourage and invite resiliency. As Magda said (again in Seeing Infants with New Eyes): In life, you are upset and then you are happy. You are challenged, you solve problems. You make choices, some are good, some are not so good, and HOPEFULLY, you learn from the choices that you made, the good ones as well as the bad ones. I think, IDEALLY, life is an ongoing learning experience, from birth til death.
Indeed, if we can all refocus on that very important idea…that life is an ongoing learning experience…if we can lean into our supportive relationships and look for our own authentic voice…we’ll all tap into our own resilience a little more easily and a little more readily each and every time we’re challenged. Who said this Approach is just for the children?