Offer Resilience Training to Improve Mental Health

single word made with wooden letters
Did you know that resilience can be trained? Learn how to train yourself and others to boost their resilience!

Share This Post

Resilience is the ability to continue functioning effectively during stressful times. It also reflects the ability to quickly bounce back after experiencing stressful events. We have discussed the power of resilience before. But, did you know that resilience can be trained? Below, learn how to train employees to be more resilient, and learn a trick to make the impact of that training even stronger.

What is the goal of resilience training?

There are two primary goals in resilience training. The first is to train employees to be able to endure stressful events without suffering performance loss. In other words, part of being resilient is to be able to experience stress without losing steam. In this case, the stressor doesn’t register to the person experiencing it because they are able to show resilience in real time. Researchers call this “robust resilience”.

However, this may not always be possible. A second goal is to train employees to be able to bounce back quickly after a stressful event. While it is preferable for a stressor to have no impact, depending on the stressor, that can be overly challenging. So, resilience training also aims to build resources so that employees can quickly recover from setbacks when they occur. Researchers call this “minimal impact resilience”.

When you're resilient, stressful events have less of a ripple effect.
When you’re resilient, stressful events have less of a ripple effect.

How do you train employees to be more resilient?

Employees can be trained to become more resilient using a self-reflection methodology. Self-reflecting during challenging times helps people to build coping strategies in the face of stressful events. First, resilience training requires that people reflect on how they responded to a stressor (e.g., emotionally, physically, behaviorally). Then they reflect on their goals in that situation. In other words, employees think about what they wanted to accomplish and how they wanted to do so. Next, they think about how they used resources to try to cope with the stressor. In other words, they reflect on the play-by-play of how they used coping strategies to combat negative responses.

After they replay the situation and reflect on how they responded, employees evaluate how well they think they did. To do so, they think about what resources they had available that they didn’t use, and how well they used the resources for resilience they did deploy. Finally, they reflect on how they would deal with a similar stressor in the future. Employees become more resilient after training because they continue to build strategies for overcoming challenges, and make concrete plans to use them.

Organizations can train employees to show resilience in the face of challenges.
Organizations can train employees to show resilience in the face of challenges.

What helps employees to have even more resilience?

New research shows that leaders can have an impact on the extent to which resilience training improves wellbeing and performance. In addition to attending training that outlines the points above, leaders can also encourage their team to engage in these strategies after a stressful event occurs. When they do so, it sends a signal to employees that leaders care about them as people.

This promotes robust resilience for experiencing stress and depression. As described above, when leaders ask employees to engage in self-reflection after stressful events occur, they don’t seem to become more depressed or stressed under challenging conditions. When they just have the training alone, they are less depressed and stressed, but they tend to follow a pattern of minimal impact (i.e., they experience setbacks at first, but then recover quickly). With regard to performance, if leaders extend training through their own actions, employees perform better under stressful work conditions (average performance is not affected). Overall, resilience training is a great investment for companies – but leaders need to follow suit to maximize the benefits!

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Get updates and learn from the best

Additional Articles You May Like

Do You Want A Healthy Workplace?

drop us a line and keep in touch