Do we all need to be Mentally Tough in today’s modern world?

So, you are tough – or so you think? But just what are you using to gauge your levels of hardiness and resilience? Your own personal perception and your observation of others probably and in that comes a good deal of personal bias.

Really understanding what hardiness and resilience are is the first step to understanding them:

Hardiness: the capacity for enduring or sustaining hardship, privation, etc.; capability of surviving under unfavourable conditions. Associated with courage; boldness; audacity. “The ability to recover quickly from change, setback or misfortune”


Resilience: resilience is defined as an individual’s ability to properly adapt to stress and adversity. “The ability to bear difficult conditions”

Our modern world is certainly tough, unfair, volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous and therefore the two qualities above are essential ingredients to success as an individual but also as a group.

A recent example of the Thai youth football team “the Wild Boars” trapped in the Tham Luang Nang Non Cave for 10 days.  So just how would you do if you were in a similar situation and how would the team you work with survive such an experience?

According to Professor Peter Clough, currently head of Psychology at the University of Huddersfield who has gained global recognition for his development of the concept of mental toughness (MT), it can be measured and it can be harnessed and developed. He does this through the through four dimensions:

Control                                 –      Life control in terms of perceived destiny

Commitment                     –      Goal setting and planning

Challenge                            –      Risk taking and experimentation

Confidence                         –      In abilities personally

Consider with honesty where you stand in each of these dimensions and think about where your colleagues stand. When you realise or imagine where you are, you can start to consider what areas you need to develop or become more aware of. The interesting thing about these dimensions is that we can be both too strong or too weak in each of them for our roles and our environment, for the opposite of mental toughness is sensitivity not mental weakness!

Knowing who sits where in terms of mental toughness helps leaders to lead more effectively, teams to work more efficiently and individuals to gain a better understanding of themselves and in doing so develop their self-compassion.

If you want to know more come to our breakfast or if you want to test your hardiness and resilience you can undertake our DNA of a Champion Test.

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