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The writer is a Consultant Clinical Psychologist.
Fareej Rubab Asks:
How to Build One’s Inner Strengths?
Inner strengths can be associated with a backpack that you take on trekking or hiking with you. It consists of all the important things that you might need in case of emergencies or fatigue, i.e., water, food, torch, batteries, shelter, etc. It is important to have enough supplies in your backpack to help you navigate through a hard road with ease. Likewise, life is a track that is sometimes twisted and sometimes smooth, and our inner strengths help in surviving through the twisted parts. And through the good parts, they allow us the ability to relax and enjoy life. What are these inner strengths? The inner strengths are stable traits or characteristics of the mind that help in overcoming traumas and stresses of daily life. It relies upon developing and maintaining positive feelings like determination, self-regulation, optimism, inner tranquillity, and integrity. Studies have identified various other integral inner strengths which are core to our beliefs, including executive functioning, resilience, self-worth or self-esteem, tolerance to distress, self-compassion, and secure attachment. The idea of inner strengths sometimes seems abrupt and hypothetical. However, it can be seen as integrated into our daily lives. For instance, when we face a setback at work, we take a sense of worth from our former achievements. Likewise, when there is a relationship strain with our partners, we find solace in friends. Hence, throughout our days, our inner strengths are automatically operating at the back of our minds, such that they are preserved in our sense of self-awareness and in the way we perceive the world.
The question often arises of how to be strong and build up reserves of this strength. There is not one solution to this matter. It involves generating useful tendencies, skills, and perspectives which pave the way for positive feelings to surface and help in inculcating qualities like calmness and contentment. It can be practiced with patience and mindfulness. Growth does not occur within the blink of an eye. It requires determination and fortitude. Therefore, it can be said that patience, along with mindfulness, is essential for building inner strengths.
Investing in one’s talents and skills also help in self-discovery and exploration, which can give one the expertise to strive and excel. These skills can be coping styles or abilities which impact our power in personal as well as work life. It can also mean being open to new experiences and challenges. This helps in creating mental flexibility and resilience. It is a well-known psychological phenomenon that feelings drive actions. Also, how people feel and act over the course of their life in specific situations and relationships depends on three main factors, i.e., challenges, vulnerabilities, and strengths. Challenges are often met either with setbacks as vulnerabilities or vigor as strengths. Inner strengths are integral to one’s existence to have a happy, productive, and fuller life by encouraging positive feelings and moods. It further helps in reducing reactivity and stress and heals psychological traumas and increases overall life satisfaction. This positive outlook on life promotes success and encourages pursuing opportunities. In essence, growing inner strength is a constant work that can be summed up as follows: work on it and reap the rewards.