What Does it Mean to Be Resilient – the bounce “back” is in your control

I can be changed by what happens to me.
But I refuse to be reduced by it.

― Maya Angelou

Resilience is the ability to withstand adversity and bounce back from difficult life events. Are you feeling resilient during these uncertain times?

As a professional Interim CEO, and as a Next Chapter coach I know this to be true: “Times of transition and change create unprecedented opportunities to mindfully curate the lives, careers and businesses we (really) want – with impact, ease, meaning, financial sustainability and joy.” 

It’s a fact.

As a leader, at some point in your career or life you will encounter adversity; a set-back, a big challenge, a personal loss, being fired, not achieving something you wanted, and now, you’re even experiencing a pandemic!  Likewise, organizations will at some point experience a leadership transition, a big challenge, a set-back, a crisis, and now, even a pandemic!

How you actively choose to view and frame the time of change determines what will and will not be possible for you, and others.  And, these are THE moments where organizational turn-arounds, personal breakthroughs, life-changing pivots, and Next Chapters are created.

To me, being resilient does not mean you are just “thinking positively,” nor does It necessarily mean that you don’t experience stress, emotional upheaval, and suffering. It’s that you learn how to reveal and see what IS.

“My barn having burned down, I can now see the moon.”
― Mizuta Masahide (17th century Japanese poet and samurai)

So many times in my first weeks onsite as an Interim CEO I’ve looked at the same situation someone else is viewing – in some cases where experts have analyzed the situation to be irreparable, and yet I see as clear as day the possibilities, strengths to build upon, impact to leverage and amplify, and an exciting path forward.   

When our son was (successfully) battling brain cancer, I began noticing and cherishing the abundance of possibilities living in the present moment brings.

And, the reason I am passionate about coaching leaders at Crossroad Moments is because while many have experienced something that is shaking them to their core, or making them question or wonder what they should do next, or they’re feeling less than, or needing something more… I KNOW that if I can show you how to observe and reveal the truth about yourself and your specific “situation,” your lives will change and you’ll create the possibility to have the impact you are meant to have!     

However, there are some caveats. Or rather, there are strategies necessary to create the possibility for opportunity. In The Career (Life!) Breakthrough AcademyTM I teach a process to look inward to reveal the missing “foundational self-knowledge” that unlocks answers to the questions of what should I do next, what is my value, my purpose, and what do I really want?!

Pause: Actively, Strategically, Courageously. 

Know that when you are navigating change, the impulse is to take action to get us “through it” or “get back to normal” as quickly as possible, and there is often a dis-comfort in being where we are. Even the definition I found for resilience assumes we want to bounce BACK to something.

Instead, times of change and transition –  crossroad moments – are the times to embrace and create the space to look inward, to PAUSE before taking action, to ask questions that create possibility, to expand definitions of our (or our organization’s) identity, value, mission and purpose, shift from defining ourselves in terms of what we DO, to the impact we aim to have when we do what we do – which can be achieved in limitless ways.

Certainly for those of us leading performing arts organizations and can’t present live performances the way we’ve always been done, are we an empty shell until we can go back to how we were pre-COVID, or instead can we look at our unique impact and find new ways to deliver THAT?! 

For those of you who are feeling like the pandemic has forced you to put your big plans on hold, or that it’s not going to be possible for you to find your dream job, or you can’t increase your fees, or (fill in the blank)… I invite you to take a breath. Try my “What if…?” exercise, or learn more about actively pausing.

You’ve got this.  SEE the possibilities that are present in your every day moments.

To your impact on others when you’re feeling joy! 🥂 

Next Chapter Coach
Creator of The Career (Life!) Breakthrough AcademyTM

PS: Please let me know how you are doing.  I love hearing from you!  Are you feeling resilient?  Are you bouncing back or forward? Are you curious about what is “next” for you? 

And if you are at a Crossroad Moment, I’m offering a free and confidential Strategy Call to begin to explore the possibilities that are present for YOU!

PPS: Don’t forget to join my  FREE Facebook Group Curate Your Next Chapter with Kathryn R Martin. Details on a FREE TRAINING will be announced soon!


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