This article is filled with research-based information, actions and activities to build resilience. Developing resilience saves us from the dysfunction in our families. It gives us a healthy focus on what does work. It buoys us up when others are sinking around us.

We deserve health and happiness. Taking even small steps for our own well-being makes a difference. The many ideas listed below can give you a leg up on taking control of your life and creating the life you always wished you had.

1. Through Meaning and Purpose:

  • Keep a personal journal. Write a personal mission statement
  • Write out personal goals every month; future-oriented planning helps
  • Build your goal-attaining skills, seek help with it and on the skills or areas you need
  • Act on your curiosity, your educational aspirations. Be persistent.

2. Through Altruism:

  • Help others, engage in kindness activities
  • Practice empathy and compassion
  • Use acceptance and tolerance strategies.

3. Develop Optimism and Hope:

  • Make a daily gratitude list
  • Practice positive self-talk. Visualize what you want
  • Expect positive results from your efforts, and from the world
  • Recognize your areas of competence in work, learning, athletics and friendship
  • Use your problem-solving skills, get help, go to the library and research it.

4. Get Organized:

  • Allow the role of rituals to bring you comfort
  • Organize your home, one area, or one room at a time
  • Have a schedule with family and loved ones.

5. Learn What Others Know:

  • Read biographies and self-help books
  • Listen to C.D’s and DVD’s to hear how to live to create the life you want
  • Talk to people who have what you want –ask them about themselves.
  • #Seek out spiritual teachers, guides for growth.

6. Reach Out:

  • Embrace your extended family
  • Reach out to the larger community by having work and community ties
  • Seek those who nurture a sense of meaning and identity
  • Connect by having dinner together, seeing movies and traveling together.

7. Experience Civic Engagement:

  • Engage with others (classmates, family and community): run, walk, build, aid
  • Do empowering activities such as helping others. Volunteer.

8. Build Resilience with your Culture:

  • Allow the role of ceremonies to bring you comfort
  • Connect to your cultural community: picnic, dance, celebrate.


9. Create Meaning and Purpose in Life:

  • Focus on what you believe you can control
  • Find value and/or your inner purpose from your own difficulties
  • Improve peer relationships, willingness to seek help and/or see a counselor
  • Believe in yourself, be persistent
  • Be a gift to others
  • Know that you are loved!