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How Fortitude Solves the Resilience Problem

Here’s a definition I found for resilience: ‘the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness’

I wrote a whole blog on how this definition sets us up to fail and found myself going around the houses with a convoluted explanation as to why. Then I thought, ‘hang on I wonder what the opposite definition of resilience is? This is what I found:

vulnerability weakness defeatism susceptibility liability sensitivity defencelessness susceptibleness hypersensitivity oversensitivity openness exposure proneness intolerance sensitiveness imprisonment responsibility incarceration irritability allergy susceptivity aversion susceptiveness allergic reaction vulnerableness helplessness inaptitude incapability incapacity incapableness defensiveness touchiness

I mean, seriously, no wonder we have embraced ‘resilience’ as the answer that will tick our success box if these are the alternatives! I am going to change this whole horror show up and help you to tap into your Fortitude, instead of just playing the resilience game that actually sets you up to fail.

Through my latest coaching conversations, I see that there is a 2020 resilience pattern that needs to be broken. I am currently working with people who say they need to be more resilient because they struggle with hardship – they feel that they need to learn to be more resilient and stronger. At the other end of the spectrum I work with people who have spent their life following the resilience ‘rules’ of recovering quickly from difficulty, on repeat, until they are so hardened that they have forgotten how to do anything other than exist in survival mode

It’s almost as if a whole learning loop has been missed out on what resilience really means and that is why I teach Fortitude instead.

The definition of Fortitude is ‘courage in pain or adversity’. This isn’t the relentless resilience cycle of ‘hardship / get over it / move on, hardship / get over it / move on, hardship / get over it / move on, hardship / get over it / move on, hardship / get over it / move on, hardship / get over it / move on’…

That cycle of experiencing hardship and digging deep to carry on, where we perhaps learn to avoid the things that are hard, delete them or pretend they haven’t happened. The cycle where we learn to protect ourselves from hardship by covering ourselves with a survival coating of something akin to hard metal that we hope is impenetrable so that we can continue surviving in the reality of our lives that can be hard and gruelling.

The Fortitude cycle is different. It’s about finding the courage to do what needs to be done to truly understand, learn from and step up from pain or adversity. This version of strength means we grow upwards with every cycle of hardship. In fact, we don’t just grow up from each cycle, we ‘glow up’, because when we use our Fortitude instead of just ‘resilience’ we learn to be more of ourself and get closer and closer to what it means to live truly aligned with our core needs.

We have the opportunity to move from the gruelling resilience cycle into our Fortitude Flow and this is where life happens in a very different way. It isn’t simply about recovering quickly – it’s about learning how to recover quickly and properly with strategies that mean we can function well, but at the same time enable us to heal and learn.

How can I help you?

I can help you to learn the Fortitude Formula, meaning you will understand your strength strategies, change crucibles and fortitude foundations for a whole new way for building your personal version of strength and resilience.

Get in touch

all the love



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