"The human capacity for burden is like bamboo. Far more flexible than you'd ever believe at first glance." —Jodi Picoult

What do you picture when you think about “resilience?” For me there are several images but none really correlate to what Jodi is saying here. I love that because the moment I read this quote I was pushed to change and grow.

When I think about resilience I first picture a giant redwood tree. Something massive, unwavering and that has stood the tests of time with strength and firmness. I also picture my Grandpas. They were both in wars, lived through the Great Depression and stood strong in their beliefs all their lives… no matter what the world around them was doing. For the longest time, resilience and standing firm in the storms were the same in my mind. But Jodi is reminding me it’s about being firmly rooted and being flexible, moveable, pliable and just letting the storms of life have their say without being broken. Bamboo looks unreliable, weak and breakable but in reality it’s deeply rooted, firm in its foundation and it flows with the wind while maintaining its strongholds.

Resilience doesn’t have to mean we stand firm, unmovable and risk further harm in the storm. Resilience is holding fast but using that strong foundation to move with the challenges we face and moving out from the storm stronger than before.

Resilience is strength through flexibility.

Sarah Deats

Sarah Deats is the Hope Inc. Stories Inspiration Engineer. Her goals are to make a connection with everyone that she can while building community, spreading hope, and sparking change. She believes that while life may not be easy, it is never lived alone.