Pat Katz Pat Katz




PAUSE – 18.05 – Building Resilience: Down But Not Out

Reflection: There isn’t a person alive who hasn’t stumbled somewhere along life’s path, been disappointed by something that did or didn’t happen, been let down by others they thought they could count on, or been blindsided by bad news.

Here, in Saskatchewan in April, it seems like the entire province was impacted by news of the death of sixteen members of the Humboldt Broncos junior hockey team in a horrendous bus accident that no one saw coming. And, later in the month, the horrendous news of a van-pedestrian mow-down on the streets of Toronto

In the days following these incidents, there is a heaviness to the air and a weight to our conversations. There is sadness and anger, and also the chilling realization that these things could happen to any one of us, on any given day, in any location.

So, how do we get through the tough times that follow such occurrences, and find ways to come back from experiences that literally take your breath away?


Action: Here are a handful of ideas for cultivating resilience. Keep these in your back pocket for the next tough time that comes your way.

  • Try not to take things personally. Don’t blame yourself for setbacks or situations that may have had nothing to do with an action that you did or didn’t take.
  • Share support. Yes, reach out to offer support to others; AND accept with grace the expressions of support that come your way.
  • Replay past triumphs – moments and situations where you found the resolve to move through tough challenges to better times.
  • Write a new story – one that moves beyond replaying the tough experience and dives deeper into any meaning that can be carried forward to handle what comes next.


Quotes Of The Week: If you break your neck, if you have nothing to eat, if your house is on fire – then you got a problem. Everything else is inconvenience. Life is inconvenient. Life is lumpy. Learn to separate the inconveniences from the real problems. You will live longer.  – Sigmund Wollman

Birds sing after a storm; why shouldn’t people feel as free to delight in whatever remains to them? – Rose F. Kennedy

Bad is never good until worse happens. – Danish Proverb

The problem is not that there are problems. The problem is expecting otherwise and thinking having problems is a problem. – Theodore Rubin

He who has a why to live can bear almost any how. – Friedrich Nietzsche

She stood in the storm and when the wind did not blow her way, she adjusted her sails. – Elizabeth Edwards

Do not judge me by my success, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again. – Nelson Mandela


Resources Of The Week: You’ll find lots of helpful ideas in this article by Linda Graham on ‘How To Build Resilience In Mid Life’.

Check out The Resilience Prescription by Dr. Dennis Charney.

Rick Hanson, author of a new book titled Resilient, offers podcasts and a free subscription to his Weekly Practices – ideas for building resilience and cultivating well being. Learn more on Rick Hanson’s website.


News From The Pauseworks Studio: Learn more about my adventures in art by watching a recently posted three-minute video titled ‘Pat On Art‘.


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Life Balance, Overload & Overwhelm, Pause E-zines, Wellness

2 Responses to “PAUSE – 18.05 – Building Resilience: Down But Not Out”

  1. John Shanks

    Thanks for your inspiring publications Pat, I always look forward to the positive spin on whatever transpires on life’s bumpy journey.
    I’m often accused by my sons as being the “King of Analogies” and as such have created many of my own quotations. I would like to add one of my favorites to your repertoire,
    “There is nothing good about being dead right”- John Shanks

  2. Pat Katz

    That’s a good one, John. Thanks for your note and encouragement.

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