8 Traits of the Most Resilient Person

What is it about a good underdog story that everyone seems to love? Is it the fact they accomplished their dreams when no one believed in them? Or could it be their unwillingness to give up in the face of defeat? Regardless of what captured your attention, there is one important trait always found in an underdog—resilience. Do you want to learn the traits of a resilient person so you can develop the trait within yourself?

Here are the 8 traits all resilient people share, so you can start accomplishing your goals and live your dream life.

1. Optimistic

Staying motivated is a key trait of the most successful people, but how do they stay motivated? Sure, when things are going well, staying motivated isn’t difficult. However, when you hit a rough patch, motivation can quickly fade.

To stay motivated through the ups and the downs, you need to maintain a certain level of optimism. When your present environment leaves something to be desired, it will cause most people to quit. However, a resilient person will allow their optimistic view of the future to guide them.

2. Planner

Optimism can only get you so far. If you continue to face setbacks and challenges, it is only natural for someone to question if they are on the right path. A resilient person recognizes blind optimism can leave you running in the wrong direction. That is why you need a proper plan. By researching and understanding the results you want to create in your life, you will know with confidence you are on the right path.

When asked how it felt to win his fourth NBA Championship, LeBron James said he had faith because he had a process. He knew if he continued to do the things that won him a past championship, he would win another. Even though he missed the playoffs the previous season, he did not change his process. He knew the plan worked in the past, so it would work again in the future. You need to find someone who has created the results you seek and model their plan.

3. Resolute

Failure is a natural and reoccurring part of life. Tenacity is the key difference between those who achieve their goals and those who fall short.[1]

Those who are persistent in the face of failure will eventually overcome any challenge. You may have heard the saying, “it is difficult to beat someone who never quits.” As simple of a saying as it is, you can immediately recognize the truth.

Who is a resilient person? The person who understands that it is not that the successful never fail, it’s that they simply never quit. If you are willing to stay the course, you will achieve the results you want.

4. Disciplined

Discipline is the ability to do what you need to do when you need to do it. Most will agree that discipline is one of the most difficult things to master. That is why it is so important for a resilient person to be a disciplined person.

Relying on self-discipline can be difficult, to say the least. That is why it is important to limit your need to use your own discipline all the time.

One good approach is to work with others. When you are a part of a mastermind or have an accountability partner, you have an extra layer of discipline at your disposal.[2] Whether you meet once a week, once a month, or once a year, you need to choose a schedule that works for you and your goal.

If you want your partnerships to work out more frequently, you may need to meet multiple times a week. However, if your goal is to do some traveling, meeting once a quarter to make sure you are on track may be sufficient.

5. Resourceful

Resourcefulness is your ability to solve everyday problems. It is not simply a measurement of your intellect and cognitive abilities. Someone who is resilient uses their resourcefulness to process information emotionally as well as intellectually.

Studies show stress negatively impacts the performance of people who have a low level of resourcefulness. In fact, these studies note there is a direct relationship between resourcefulness and sociability, resilience, creativity, and self-awareness.[3] If you are ready to be a resilient person, then you must be ready to use some creative ways to solve problems.

6. Patient

As you have probably started to notice from the list of traits, you need to be committed for the long haul. Things are not always going to materialize immediately. Sometimes, it is a timing issue and you are doing everything right. The opportunity just needs time to emerge.

Consider a gardener who plants the seed of an orange tree on Monday and looks for a full-grown tree a week later. You understand that is not reasonable because you know it takes time for a seed to mature. It also takes water, sunlight, and nutrient-rich soil. We haven’t even talked about the years you would need to wait for your orange tree to produce fruit.

The problem is that most people don’t have a clear understanding of how long their goal will take to accomplish. You need to be reasonable and patient through the process.

7. Grower

Someone who is resilient is not only patient in the process but patient with themselves, too. There are times when you are not yet the person you need to be to accomplish the goal you seek.

Another way to look at it is to recognize the habits of your life and the results they create. Someone who is healthy has a different set of daily habits than someone who is unhealthy. A successful investor has a different relationship with money than someone who doesn’t save anything. There is a growth each of you will go through as you work to achieve your goal.

This is much like a video game or your favorite action movie in many ways. In the beginning, you are not wise or strong enough to defeat the villain. Somewhere along the way, you lose and it requires you to reevaluate your effort. You then go off to train and become stronger. By the end, you have become a better version of yourself and you rise to the challenge to defeat your foe.

Someone who is resilient knows they have the ability to overcome life’s challenges if they continue to invest in their development.

8. Honest

Being honest is both an act of courage and an act of self-awareness. It is an act of courage because it requires you to do what is right, regardless of the circumstances.

Most resilient people know their efforts are not always going to be met with love and adoration. Yet, they still continue. They continue not because they are looking for recognition or applause. They continue because they are doing what they believe needs to be done.

Most people are uncomfortable with the idea of being rejected by others. As a result, most people live a life that is not true to themselves. This is where self-awareness comes in. Even though most people do not live a life true to themselves, they are not aware of it. Being honest to others is one thing, but being honest to yourself is another.

Most people disguise their fabrications in the guise of being reasonable. They will say reasonable people give up on their dreams because dreams are for children and unreasonable themselves. This falsehood is the number one killer of dreams and people’s ability to be resilient. You must be honest with yourself about what it is that you want to accomplish with your life and be willing to go for it.

Final Thoughts

Who is a resilient person? If you are willing to add these traits to your life, you will be. The most resilient person is the person who stays the course when others would have quit. They recognize most people underestimate what they can accomplish in five years but overestimate what they can accomplish in one

The path to greatness is not always easy, but for those who are willing to stay the course, it is always worth it. Stay true to yourself and be willing to invest your time and resources into accomplishing your goals.

More Tips on How to Be a Resilient Person

  • What Is Resilience and Why Is It Important for Success?
  • How to Build Resilience to Survive in This Difficult World
  • 10 Strategies Resilient People Use To Bounce Back When Life Knocks Them Down

Featured photo credit: Drop the Label Movement via unsplash.com


[1] International Journal of Emergency Mental Health: Seven Characteristics of Highly Resilient People: Insights from Navy SEALs to the “Greatest Generation”
[2] Entrepreneur: An Accountability Partner Makes You Vastly More Likely to Succeed
[3] Edutopia: Teaching for Life Success: Why Resourcefulness Matters

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