Resilience

re·sil·ience (/rəˈzilyəns/)
noun
1. the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness.

I think this is probably the public enemy number 1 when it comes to doing meaningful work. Meaningful work usually doesn’t come easy. It means trying and failing… a lot. Failure is demoralizing; it makes you feel like shit and we try to avoid that feeling as much as possible. The ironic thing is that feeling usually means progress.

In biology, the resilience of an ecosystem is highly dependent on the biodiversity of that ecosystem. The more different types of organisms and roles that an ecosystem possesses, the more resistant it is to changes and trauma. If something bad happens to one species, there are others species present to fill in the resulting role-gaps, in some cases giving time for that species to recover or changing the ecosystem profile without changing ecosystem function, preventing systemic collapse.

We can apply a similar logic to our own resilience. If we expose ourselves to diverse experiences and perspectives the more prepared we will be for whatever comes our way. On the other hand, if we go through life with a single point of view, the more likely a singular difficult event will result in personal collapse. And while we’re kind of on the subject we should also try to prevent actual ecosystem collapse. More on that later.

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