Here’s How To Become More Resilient In Our Work

Photo by Dillon Shook on Unsplash

Everyone could use more resilience in their lives. This isn’t a skill that we ever master. Whether you make your living in art, run your own business, or are a stay at home mom — we all need more resilience.

Resilience is like a muscle. If we don’t work on its growth we will experience atrophy.

Our work will present plenty of opportunities to practice our resilience. Challenges with clients, disagreements with partners, and creative struggles are always nearby, in our work. How we handle it is crucial to the success of our business and our careers. We don’t have time to feel sorry for ourselves. We have to keep moving forward — through these challenges.

You Won’t Always Get it Right

Nobody gets it right 100% of the time. Nobody. Not even the billionaire entrepreneur. All of those successful people you see in life have made plenty of mistakes. Probably still do make some mistakes. Being perfect isn’t what it’s about. Think progress, not perfection.

Instead of focusing on making the perfect call, writing the perfect post, and having the perfect resolution to every issue that comes up — focus on working through it, the best you can. If you make a mistake, make sure you can learn from it. Grow from it. But don’t dwell on it.

If we want to succeed in whatever we do in life, we must think iteration. “That which hurts, instructs”, said Benjamin Franklin.

The desire for perfection is ego, unrealistic, and waiting for the perfect timing. Iteration is letting go of the ego, understanding it won’t be perfect, and looking for the lessons along the way.

Let the ego of perfection go. Don’t be paralyzed by your expectations of perfection. It’s impossible!

Mistakes will be made and it’s not about complete prevention, it’s about how to handle them once they occur. Learn from them. Then move on from them.

You Won’t Make People Happy

“If you haven’t pissed someone off by noon, then you probably aren’t making any money” Dan Kennedy

There is more truth to this quote than we want to accept. I’m not suggesting waking up with the purpose of upsetting someone. But, if we are going to do our job to the best of our ability, we are going to have to tell people things they don’t want to hear.

We will have to advise clients on matters that don’t make them happy. We may have to tell our boss about situations or deliver reports that won’t make them jump up and down with joy. We may write an article that has as many dislikes as likes.

That’s ok. It’s not about making everyone happy. It’s about doing our job. That’s it.

Look at it as the cost of doing business. We won’t be loved by everyone. We might not even be liked by everyone. But if we are going to do our job and be resilient in our job, we have to understand this is part of the game.

That prospect might not want to hear from us for the 5th time in the last 3 months, so what? Are they going to cry at your funeral? If you don’t tell your client the real truth — no matter how uncomfortable — is it in the best interest of their company to not hear the truth? What’s the function of your job? To appease or provide proper advice?

We will have to say and do things sometimes that may upset people. Most of the time they will get over it, even appreciate it. Either way, we have to do our job and it takes resilience to understand that one person, one client, one critic — will not destroy our business and reputation.

Keep Moving Forward

So by this point in the day, you’ve messed something up on a project. We had to tell a strategic partner that we aren’t going to handle it that way, despite their wishes. It’s not even lunch.

So we have two choices. Dwell on the past, which we can’t change. Or, make notes, ask what you could get better next time, and keep moving.

You still have more to get done. There are more challenges, opportunities, and possibilities out there. We don’t have time to sit around and wonder if we handled this right or if we made somebody mad. Keep moving forward.

We can’t control the past. It’s done. It’s over and what’s been done is done. What we do have some control over is the present and how we handle this moment. Focus on that.

Focus on your next post. Make the next call to a prospect. Get out ahead of a potential problem in your business. Just don’t look back.

Life and work can be hard. There are challenging days. We have difficult projects, tough business decisions, and we have to manage all of these things, along with expectations. We have careers to build and businesses to run and grow. It’s not easy.

We have to have resilience. Without it, we will fail. Without it, our work will not survive. It’s that simple.

We need resilience for our companies to thrive and our businesses to grow. Our clients, partners, and everyone we work with deserve our best. Our creative endeavors need this quality so we can keep moving forward through the failure. And for those stay at home moms, you have no time to wonder if every decision was correct or liked.

Grow this skill now and work on it daily. We need it.

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Chase Arbeiter

Chase Arbeiter

Building my happy quiet life. Teaching what I learn along the journey. Subscribe at

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