We can build the capacity to be resilient during times of stress.
New research over the last 10 years has established that emotions play a much greater role in our health than previously accepted. In fact, HQ (heart intelligence) is key to improving physiology, health, mental clarity and performance in every aspect of our life. Emotions, and our heart as a regulator of emotions, turn out to be key to building resilience.
The Institute of HeartMath (www.heartmath.org), leading researcher for bridging the connection between our heart and mind, defines resilience as the capacity to prepare for, recover from and adapt in the face of stress, challenge and adversity. Resilience is the most effective personal skill needed because without intelligently managing our personal energy, we cannot succeed in the world we have created today.
If the level of stress, challenge or adversity remains high without adequate tools for maintaining resilience, then
Personal energy becomes drained
Depleting emotions dominate thoughts words and actions
Burn out, poor decision-making and declining health result
The keys to energy self-regulation and improved performance are:
- Self-awareness… what stressor is draining your energy?
- Breathe… deeper, slower breathing establishes an inner calm
- Learn personal practices to stop depleting and start renewing energy
Developing resilience skills enables greater capacity to store and efficiently utilize our human energy system. Building increasing levels of the physiological state called coherence leads to an optimal state in which heart, mind and emotions are aligned and in sync leading to sustained health and performance. Heart Rhythms, specifically Heart Rate Variability, provide a measurable window to monitor and manage resilience. Proven technology has enabled simple feedback apps and devices (such as those from HeartMath) that coach, train and support development of resilience skills.
The most important step in instantly building our resilience, while experiencing a stressful situation, is to remember to breathe. No one even needs to know that we are taking a little slower, deeper breath. Just choosing to breathe opens up the potential to rise above stress.
We can choose to quickly build skills and habits that harness the intersection of science and consciousness practices for significantly improved personal and professional effectiveness.