Not everyone possesses the psychological, intellectual, and emotional strength to manage emotions in a healthy, productive manner. Mental strength is defined by what we do and at times, what we choose not to do, based on the situation. While many think being mentally strong is something you obtain naturally, the truth is far from that. When Thomas Edison’s factory was ruined by fire in 1914, destroying prototypes and causing $23 million in damage, Edison’s response was simple: “Thank goodness all our mistakes were burned up. Now we can start fresh again.”
Edison’s response is an example of mental strength – to be able to see an opportunity even in the worst of situations and turn them into something positive. Without further ado, here are some of the hallmark habits of mentally strong people.
1. The ability to adapt to change.
This is one of the most useful character traits of a mentally strong person. They are flexible and constantly adapting to the changes happening around them. When a change is just around the corner, although it might be an uncomfortable experience, they know that it is imminent, so they focus their energy towards adapting to the change, rather than resisting it. Obsessing over something that is unpredictable or beyond our control can affect the way we think, as well as our happiness. Strong people understand this and form a plan of action, should these changes occur.
2. They embrace failure.
When life throws curveballs at them, they understand that major are part of, well, life. Strong people embrace failure since they know that the road to success is riddled with failure. In life, no one experiences the taste of success without first knowing the meaning of defeat. By understanding and embracing failure, time and resources can be put towards finding the right solution for the impending problem. While strong people are also prone to frustration, it’s the frustration itself that causes them to think differently, or outside the box; in order to find the solution they have been searching for all their lives.
3. They do not have the habit of comparing themselves with others.
Another useful trait among mentally strong people is that they do not allow themselves to compare with others. This is because they know that everyone has something unique to offer in this world and not everyone is the same. Mentally strong people do not require the satisfaction of making someone else feel bad about themselves. Those who feel the need to take other people down a notch in order to feel good about themselves are people who contain jealousy and resentment within them. Strong people don’t waste their energy on such things and instead funnel their energy towards appreciating life and being thankful for everything they have.
4. They are kind and ready to help others in a moments notice.
Everyone is responsible for their own lives and no one owe’s anybody anything, just like others don’t owe you. Mentally strong people however, go out of their way to help others. This is not because they feel like they are obliged, but because they are considerate and helpful. They are caring and feel responsible for other people’s well-being, while not expecting anything in return.
5. They know when to say ‘no’.
Although mentally strong people are helpful, caring and considerate of others, they know their limits. If their boss asks them to work on a week they had a vacation planned, they won’t hesitate to say ‘no’. This is because mentally strong people are committed to their goals, responsibilities, and values. They are capable of understanding where their emotional responsibility ends and another person’s begins, and vice versa. Standing up for yourself and showing others that you do not allow anyone to overstep their boundaries can benefit you in the long run. This shows that you are an independent and strong person deep inside.
6. Mentally strong people focus on sharpening their skills, rather than showing them off.
Most people seek some form of validation from others in order to make themselves feel better. Mentally strong people however, are not concerned about what others think and do not need recognition from others to succeed in life. Instead, they are positive about their abilities and strive to make themselves better. They are also true to themselves, who live by their words and are in line with their behavior.
7. They are a realistic optimist.
In life, mentally strong people are able to look for the silver lining. Even on the darkest of times, they are capable of looking at the bright side and making a realistic choice. Making decisions can be hard but one of the best traits of strong people is that they do not allow themselves to become blind by their optimistic tendencies. They also accept life as is and take full responsibility for their actions. When most people in life ask for more, mentally strong people acknowledge that they have more than they need.
8. They do not focus on things that are beyond their control.
Trying to take control of things far beyond our abilities can have a devastating impact on our life. When we focus our time and resources towards everything, it only delays progression and in turn makes us less productive. Mentally strong people understand this logic and only devote their resources to the things they can control. This is what makes them effective and productive in life. They also do not have the habit of dwelling on the problem — instead, they create solutions.
9. You don’t improvise, instead you prefer to strategize.
Mentally strong people are not impulsive and instead have a plan for everything. Impulsiveness is a common trait among people who have no plans in life or don’t care to bother about it until the last minute. Such behavior can have negative consequences since they have to focus most of their time finding ways to improvise. Strong people on the other hand have a well detailed plan for everything. By doing so, they are well aware of the risks involving situations and can have backup plans if something goes south.
10. They get enough sleep.
Sleep is an important part of our life. While some people overestimate the importance of sleep in life, mentally strong people understand it. When we sleep, our brain gets rid of toxic proteins that are by products of neural activity throughout the day. Unfortunately, our brain can only get rid of them when we sleep and not getting enough sleep can cause them to remain in your brain cells, which ultimately impairs the ability to think rationally. Studies show that no amount of caffeine can reduce this or help us think properly. Mentally strong people understand the significance of quality sleep and make sure that one of their top priorities is to get enough sleep.