By Claire Hanlon, Supervisor, Community Services and Sarah Rosenfeld, Supervisor, Counselling Services, Catholic Family Service

Stresses. Unexpected situations. Bumps in our confidence. Uncertainty in our path forward. These are normal, albeit uncomfortable experiences that come with being human.

Sometimes we find ourselves in situations that have us questioning our strengths and abilities. We find ourselves feeling like we don’t have the skills to navigate these things in a healthy way.

Where does resiliency come from in these moments?

As supervisors here at CFS, we often sit with clients who are seeking answers to this question. As professionals, we can find ourselves seeking similar answers.

Here are the beautiful and real thoughts we have come to realize as we work every day to encourage our clients (and each other!) to look at life through a lens of resiliency:

  • Resilience comes from a belief in yourself and a faith that all is well.
  • Resilience comes from hope that there is always a healthy path forward.
  • Resilience comes from being vulnerable to share your thoughts, hopes and worries.
  • Resilience comes from having an open, caring listener reminding you that what you have to share is courageous and important.
  • Resilience comes from sharing resources, ideas and strategies with people you trust.
  • Resilience comes from intuition; encouraging others to listen to their own intuition and to trust in what it is trying to say.
  • Resilience comes from believing that, no matter how uncomfortable and uncertain a situation may be, there is always potential for growth and learning.
  • Resilience comes from choosing to become better, more thoughtful, kinder and more courageous. Resilience comes in asking yourself what you are willing to stop doing to improve a situation, conflict or challenge.
  • Resilience is beginning to understand the benefit of the problem or struggle you are facing.
  • Resilience is envisioning opportunity and choice when what you are experiencing most is fear and uncertainty.
  • Resilience is declaring yourself to be a contribution and seeing yourself as someone who makes a difference.
  • Resilience is about being accountable, responsible, creative and open minded.

As colleagues, we encourage each other to be resilient and to see our own opportunities for resiliency. As supervisors, we work together to intentionally model this for the staff in our divisions who work frontline with clients every day. For our clients, we celebrate and honour where each person is on their path to resiliency.

We do all of this so that when life throws uncomfortable and uncertain experiences our way, we know that we truly have what it takes to take a deep breath, face the uncertainty and discomfort, and walk forward with a confidence that ‘We’ve got this!’

Read Working in the Presence of Resilience, a previous blog post by Sarah Rosenfeld.