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Resiliency Isn't a solo act

What will it take to recognize our own value? We are often required to identify our own strengths and be our own cheerleaders. This can be a worthy mission. Reflecting on our knowledge, skills, and experience can give us direction and focus. We also can use this to detect gaps in our skills and seek out new training and certifications.

What happens though, in the circumstance where we become blind to our talents? How do we recover when we, ourselves are unable to perceive ourselves as being skilled or having gained knowledge and experience? Similar to the Imposter Syndrome this condition can paralyze us into low productivity, decreased job satisfaction, ineffective performance, and even impact others who might look up to us.

This is where we need a solid support system in place. Our resiliency isn’t dependent on our own selves, as a solo act. This is when we can count on those rich connections we’ve made in training sessions, at conferences, or with our co-workers, mentors, and supervisors. I’m the first one to tell you how important these relationships are, and sometimes I’m also the person that forgets that I have this amazing network.

Recently in a moment when I had lost my way, I reached out to my friend, Toby. He was so supportive. He hyped me up, he listed many of my worthy attributes, and for this, I am most grateful. But I felt like I was being a burden, so I said, “You don’t have to rescue me.” He responded with the most profound 7 words. He said, “You also don’t have to drown yourself.”


I had read something similar recently about a woman who was playing with her small child in a wave pool, and was being battered by the waves. It took her a while to remember that she was a grown person and could stand up and stop the assault of waves to her face. Do we simply forget who we are? Are we overlooking how valuable we are to this world just as we are, even without our list of accomplishments?

The antidote to this condition is to build resilience into our day. Have a check-in buddy. I’m currently being encouraged by my friend, Melissa Lounsbury (Charlotte FD) daily to stay on task and eat the frog first (that's a different blog). Reach out to your personal community and talk about how you can be more supportive to one another. We are living in an age of being super-connected, yet often feel more isolated than ever. Reach out, and remember, stop holding your own head under water. “You don’t have to drown yourself”.


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