Success is not final, failure is not fatal. It is the courage to continue that counts.

Winston Churchill

Whether or not you succeed in life is not dependent on: inheritance, genes, environment, race, friends, physical attributes, skills, hours of practice, number of degrees, likability… etc.

They all play a part – don’t get me wrong. But success is not dependent on any one of these factors. In fact, the biggest predictor to success?

Tenacity. Grit. Persistence.

Resilience: the number of times you get up after each fall.

Science has identified seven factors that make up resilience. See how many of these you have down and which ones need some fine-tuning:

1. Emotion Regulation. How well do you stay calm under pressure?

We all know that one person in our family or circle of friends that loses his cool at the drop of a pin. Emotion Regulation isn’t just about controlling your emotions. It’s about understanding what pushes your hot buttons, why they push your hot buttons, and how you can remove those triggers or navigate around them for your highest good.

Questions to ponder:

I do not have a hard time controlling myself when I get emotional.

I have no trouble being in control of how I react to bad news.

I know how I’m feeling at any given point in time, and how my thoughts affect my feelings.

2. Impulse Control. How well can you wait for gratification?

For a while, I had a difficult time deciphering the difference between impulsivity and spontaneity. The story I had spun in my head for years was that I was an impulsive person. But someone helped me realize the word I was looking for was actually spontaneity. What’s the difference? Being impulsive leads you to deviate from your goals. It knocks you off track. Being spontaneous, on the other hand, helps you to engage the imaginative and creative part of your brain.

Questions to ponder:

I have no trouble staying focused and removing distractions that deter me from my goals.

I do not give up easily.

I’m pretty good at making plans and sticking to them.

3. Self-Efficacy. How much have you mastered?

It doesn’t matter which area of life, or in how many different areas of life. It’s important to master skills in area(s) of your life that require your participation. Think about how effortlessly you navigate your relationships and responsibilities. If you have a pretty good handle on being an independent and self-sufficient person, success comes much more easily.

Questions to ponder:

I’m pretty confident that I can handle whatever comes my way.

I feel more excitement about doing things that challenge me vs. things that I’m good at already.

I can learn to do most things asked of me.

4. Reaching Out. How readily do you reach out to others for support?

Researchers are beginning to find more and more that health is much more related to social connections than previously thought. In fact, some scientists are already finding that your connections are more important than diet and exercise combined in terms of your health and longevity!

Questions to ponder:

I think about others in what I do alot.

I’m comfortable meeting new people.

I know when and who I can reach out to for help in different situations.

5.) Empathy.

How well you can read and respond to other people’s emotional states makes a big impact on how others perceive you. Although sometimes undetectable to the conscious eye, there are facial mannerisms and reactions that occur in response to emotions that happen within an individual. And as human beings, we’re equipped to notice on a subconscious level. When we do subconsciously detect and register emotions, we have what’s called mirror neurons that fire to allow us to connect with the person we’re interacting with.

Questions to ponder:

I can recognize facial expressions and connect them to how others are feeling.

I am easily moved by others’ emotions.

I am told often that I understand others very well.

6.) Optimism.

After happiness and love, the third most requested and sought-after feeling when I work with clients is hope. Don’t ever take hope for granted – it’s what keeps a man motivated to get his act together, what keeps a desperate person from taking his own life, and what catapaults someone to leave behind her whole family to move to a different country.

Questions to ponder:

Even on bad days, I can make myself feel better by knowing that things will get better.

When someone acts angrily, I instinctively know that they aren’t always like that.

I believe that things can always get better.

7.) Causal Analysis.

This last trait requires flexibility, ability to see multiple perspectives, and patience. It’s one’s ability to see the whole picture and have the diligence to think through each detail, one step at a time.

Questions to ponder:

In order to solve a problem, I need to understand the whole situation.

I have trouble jumping to conclusions when I don’t have all of the information in front of me.

I understand that there are multiple ways to get to the end goal.

How well did you do? Did you answer to most of the questions with a “yes”?

Work on fine-tuning one skill at a time.

Live with intention. Lead with inspiration.