Blue Flower

After reading the article in HR Magazine on the pros and cons of Resilience programmes, I thought it might be useful to unpack some of the elements of resilience in the context of our working life. Although there are numerous interpretations of what actually amounts to resilience, for the purposes of this piece I intend to view it as our ability to cope with adversity, and our ability to bounce back. Bouncebackability is an interesting concept, coined by that famous academic Ian Dowie, in his description of Crystal Palace’s faltering football season!

Ian Dowie

To break down resilience into bite size chunks, we can look at it in two dimensions initially, those that are dependent on our personality; and skills that can be taught and learned. Dealing with the first, it appears that personality plays a huge part, simply put, some people are naturally more resilient than others. Resilience can also change over time, through life events (eg having children, changing jobs). Some people are resilient in some aspects, and not in others. It is complicated stuff! I would suggest that in some respect, the world of policing doesn’t get off to the greatest of starts in this regard, generally recruiting to traits that include a questioning persona, a propensity to overthink, deeply suspicous; and a smattering of pessimism thrown in for good measure! Hardly forms the basis of the perfect well-being character trait set!

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