Resilience: What I learned from my feline friends!


You’re like a cat. You always land on your feet!” Does this describe you?

Resilience is the ability to spring back into shape, the capacity to recover from difficulties. Though cats do not always land on their feet, most often they do. Like their potentially resilient human owners, they seem to have the uncanny ability to right themselves quickly when the inevitable falls of life happen. What is it that allows them to do so? How do some people seem to do the same?

According to Animal Planet, the second a cat begins to fall; it begins to shift his balance. His body determines which side should be up, and he begins rotating his head, directed by his eyes and ears, until he’s facing that way. We all experience “falls” In life whether they be loss of a relationship, employment or whatever current problem seems to have knocked us off our equilibrium suddenly. Confidence breeds confidence and surviving the inevitable air borne adventures, when life trips us up, increases our sense of mastery over circumstances we might feel are out of our control.

Does this sound like some pie in the sky, ‘polyanna’ view of life? I can assure you that it is not. Parts of my life have consisted of trauma, and countless falls into despairing ‘clinical’ depression. Thriving is our natural state. Whether you believe in Buddha, God, a Higher Power, the forces of life or a combination of many things believe in something, and in yourself. The cat has a belief that its feet will touch the floor and it will not hesitate to be on its way to the next adventure.

Like the cat, do not waste time despairing about the fall. Look to your landing and anticipate a good outcome. Countless life coaches and famous motivational speakers have outlined how we create our reality and how positive energy, properly directed, is a very powerful force. See your landing, position your feet and prepare to find yourself on solid ground again. A cat or human that lies idly has no risk of falling.

Cats naturally jump, hunt, play and take risks so falls are inevitable. The same is true of you! Jump, take risks and play. Falls will happen but you can learn the lesson of our feline friends in motion, landing with purpose and grace. The more practice you have, the more you will find yourself in right motion, anticipating the best outcomes and ready to move on to the next adventure that life brings.