Using Resiliency to Combat Losing

The 2016 Olympic Games kept us all glued to our TVs watching as the world’s best athletes attempted to bring home a medal for their country.

But truthfully, more people leave the Olympics without a medal than with, so how do the athletes that leave empty handed continue to move on after a painful defeat? And how do so many athletes continue to pursue the Olympic dream, and return to compete four years later after facing such a major setback?

The key is resiliency. Athletes that qualify to compete in the Olympics are the epitome of resiliency. They have faced major hardships, setbacks, and demonstrated pure dedication and determination to even qualify. They have trained not only their bodies, but their minds to bounce forward from adversity, and view challenges as an opportunity.

Let’s reflect on the core elements of TRACOM’s Resiliency Model. Personal responsibility, realistic optimism, personal beliefs, self-assurance, self-composure, problem solving, goal orientation, and social support. These incredible competitors demonstrate everything we should aspire to be – not just in sport, but in life.

It’s not just solely their talent that brought them to compete in Rio. Imagine being a coach training athletes who had talent but none of the other characteristics of resiliency. No personal responsibility, no self-composure. This is why they groom their athletes not only physically, but mentally.

And while some people are just naturally more resilient than other people, resiliency is primarily a learned skill.

This is equally as applicable to your organization and your employees. You can have the most brilliant developer in the whole world, but if she loses her cool and gives up when she immediately can’t figure out the source of a problem, she is not as useful as a less intelligent developer who has more stamina and drive to figure out a solution to a problem.

All of us, at one point or another are going to face major setbacks in life. Whether we rise above and overcome, or crumble under failure depends on our adaptive and resilient mindset. Whether there are major letdowns in their personal lives or unforeseen changes at work, to ensure your employees can remain reliable and durable when times get tough you must invest in their resiliency.