At Simon Associates Management Consultants, one of our former clients was struggling with total disarray in her company, leading to significant financial losses, downsizing and job elimination, not to mention loss of trust in the markets her company serves. Describing how she was coping, she said: “I am resilient and somehow I will do just fine.”
Another client, and then a female acquaintance, too, told me the same thing — that they are resilient and will figure out how to deal with their present struggles and come out the other side.
Ah, resiliance, that crucial attribute that enables people to cope with the unexpected, unfamiliar, unwanted or simply the pain and challenges that life tosses at them. It's something I recently wrote about in an article for Forbes.com, which you can read here.
3 attibutes through the ages that have helped form human resilience
As an anthropologist, what is of particular significance to me is how these colleagues’ statements reminded me of the ways in which Homo sapiens have evolved, adapted and become the dominant Homo species on earth, as described in the excellent book by Yuval Noah Harari, Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind.
As I describe in my Forbes article, Harari believes that there are three major forces that propelled Homo sapiens into dominance: