Brother Be Well Wellness for Boys and Men of Color

Learn to push back
against adversity

We cannot predict the whirlwind of life, so it’s important to learn how to handle its inevitable stressors with grace, faith, and resilience. Need help in this area? Our peers and experts will show you the way.

Not all rain leaves destruction like hurricanes. Sometimes the rain falls so you can see the rainbow – a reminder of hope.



Life may not come with a road map, but everyone will experience twists and turns, from everyday challenges to traumatic events with lasting impact. This may include the death of a loved one, a life-altering accident, or a serious illness. Each change affects people differently, bringing a unique flood of thoughts, strong emotions, and uncertainty. Yet over time, people generally adapt well to life-changing situations thanks to resilience.

Psychologists define resilience as the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats, or significant sources of stress. Examples include: relationship problems or workplace and financial stressors. As much as resilience involves bouncing back from these difficult experiences, it can also involve profound personal growth.

While these adverse events can be painful and difficult, they do not have to determine life outcomes. There are aspects we can shift, control, and grow with. That’s the role of resilience. If we open our minds to embrace difficulty and change, we will grow. Eventually, our ability to withstand adversity becomes an asset for character development. 

While certain factors might make some individuals more resilient than others, resilience isn’t necessarily a personality trait that only some people possess. To the contrary, resilience involves behaviors, thoughts, and actions that anyone can learn and develop. The ability to learn resilience is one reason research has shown that resilience is ordinary, not extraordinary.

Like building a muscle, increasing resilience takes time and intentionality. Focusing on four core components: wellness, connection, positive thinking, and meaning, can empower us to withstand and learn from painful, traumatic experiences, including racial oppression.

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