Building Resilience Course Contents
This resilience training course is tailored to reflect the needs of the delegates on the day.
We will include many of the exercises listed below and any additional material that the trainers feel is relevant.
This is a day that raises awareness of what resilience is, what builds and breaks it and what your default resilience strategies might be.
The day will focus on tools and techniques to help you build resilience in yourself and others.
It’s also an acknowledgement that resilience is a bit of a moveable feast – our ability to cope goes up and down depending upon a whole range of things: what else might be going on, who else is involved, what actually has happened, whether you or someone else got up on the wrong side of the bed.
We will look at patterns, default behaviour, emotional reactions, expectations and pay particular attention to how anyone can make things worse in terms of eroding their resilience by spending too much time and energy being distressed with the distress.
By adding to your resilience ‘toolkit’ you will have a lot more to call upon when the going gets rough.
You'll have the opportunity to say why you've come and what you would like from the day.
This will help your trainers shape the day to your specific needs.
Everyone comes to training with a lot of other things on their mind.
Our icebreaker is intended to energise and enable the delegates to get to know one another slightly better.
Our energisers are dynamic yet never put anyone on the spot.
The Ladder to Nowhere
As a prelude to the day, we have a quick-paced exercise that looks at how quickly our thoughts can escalate a difficult situation into a catastrophe.
What is Resilience?
In two groups, you will be asked to define the term – what is resilience?
We’ll also discuss the associated behaviours and emotions that can accompany resilience.
A model of resilience and what contributes to our natural capabilities will be offered.
We emphasise that resilience is a capacity that can be developed – from any starting point.
Buffer to Stress
Here we look at a number of issues to do with stress including:
- Good and Bad Stress
- Tipping Points
- Building in Time Outs for recovery
Everyone has a time in which they managed under adversity.
You will be asked to identify what strategies/tools/support enabled you to be resilient in a specific situation.
This will raise awareness of your default patterns and existing tools.
Obviously, everyone deals with resilience differently.
However, we do know that there are common themes and behaviours that we believe can help develop and strengthen resilience.
Something Happens! → First Reactions (primitive brain usually kicks in here) →
Thought Gathering → Second Reactions → Stepping Away and Gaining
Perspective → Getting Support → Solution Finding
What Builds Resilience?
The following factors have been identified by Carol Pemberton as supporting / building resilience:
- Emotional Control
- Making Meaning
- Realistic Positivity
- Solution Finding
What Else Contributes?
In addition, there are a few more elements that all contribute to building resilience:
- Seeing the bigger picture
- Gaining perspective
- Creating a support network
- Knowing how to self-protect
What Breaks Resilience?
In turn, there are many factors that can undermine people’s resilience.
Of course, it’s individual, but at some point, most people will have encountered the following:
- Overload – too much to do in too little time
- Your own mistakes
- Someone else’s mistakes
- Unanticipated bad news
- Difficult managers, colleagues, etc.
- Unresolved conflict
- Sustained criticism
- Emotional or physical shocks
- When things don’t go according to plan
The Undermining Voice
Everyone has a niggling voice that can make us question our resilience.
Here you'll identify your undermining voice and look at how to combat it.
Delegates will be offered processes to support the development of your own or others’ resilience.
You'll be encouraged to identify specific behaviours relating to each factor that contributes to the growth or decline of your own resilience.
All the processes are designed to give the delegates a greater awareness of how they respond to difficulties, especially unexpected ones or the ones that take them to the tipping point.
The greater your awareness, the better you will be able to change your behaviour.
Before there can be a change in behaviour, you have to be aware of your default emotional response.
What ‘narrative’ do you tell yourself that helps or undermines resilience?
The narrative reinforces belief systems and belief systems impact on behaviour.
Identifying purpose and meaning.
How to persist when the going gets rough.
What’s really important, what motivates?
Identifying and acknowledging personal values is essential when looking at resilience.
When difficulties arise it’s often because there’s a clash of values.
Delegates will be encouraged to identify what their purpose is in a specific context/contexts.
For example, what is ultimately important to them in the situation of their choice.
This creates the framework for the rest of the day’s work.
Circles of Concern
It can be very easy to focus a lot of energy and attention on areas in which we have no control, which can, in turn, lead to a sense of helplessness and lessened resilience.
This exercise helps delegates to identify what they are concerned about, what they have influence over and what they have control over.
This awareness can help delegates see where they might have more influence/control than they might recognise and to make conscious choices over where to optimally focus their attention and energy.
A practical tool for identifying underlying issues and getting to the heart of what you can actually do to move problems forward.
Participants build a resilience pyramid:
The bottom of the pyramid is made up of foundation blocks: what strengths and traits delegates recognise they have always had.
The next tier is what people have acquired and developed: the skills that support those strengths.
The third is behaviour that reflects those strengths.
Finally, the apex of the pyramid is a strapline which articulates the delegates’ resilience factor.
Mantras can help change our inner, unhelpful narratives.
Delegates will identify one that supports their resilience.
Tips and Tricks
Drawing on the work from the day, delegates will compile a ‘crib sheet’ of simple things they can to build resilience.
You don’t want to do this stuff alone (isolation is toxic for humans) so we look now at how you create a support structure and other ways to take emotional, physical and practical care of yourself.
- What do you already do?
- What are your calming strategies?
- Where do you off-load?
- Does it work?
Here we ask delegates a few questions to help them identify their individual next steps and what resources they will need to accomplish them
Post-cards from the edge…
Delegates will be asked to write a postcard – to themselves – of what their key learning has been from the training.
This will be sent to them two weeks from the course date as a reminder of what they are taking away.
The Next Step
Here you'll identify what you'll do differently.
You'll make a seven-day commitment based on the three important changes you identified at the beginning of the day.
You will identify what will stop you putting this into practice and what support you need going forward.
We will give out Impact Factory documents to support the course.
You'll get copies relevant hand-outs to remind you of the coursework.
Two weeks after the course one of your trainers will call to see how you are getting on.
You will have email and telephone access to both of your trainers.
You'll also have access to a course web page containing
- Handouts used during the course
- New supportive material
- Impact Factory PDF documents
- Recommended reading
- Links to our favourite videos
Building Resilience Course