Is Grit and Resilience Real? And How Do You Get It?

From mindfulness apps to virtual therapy sessions, digital tools offer instant access to wellness resources

In 2015, Brie Code was working at leading video game company Ubisoft as lead artificial intelligence programmer when she realized that many people she knew – about half, by her estimation – found video games boring.

Mental-health experts aren’t fully sold on digital wellness tools.TRU LUV

“When I was digging into it, I discovered that there are two human stress responses – one more driven by adrenalin and one more driven by oxytocin,” she says. “Game designers use a sense of rising challenge over time to continually stimulate adrenalin. This suggested to me that there could be a complete other model that we haven’t explored yet, where the experience is based on deepening care and connection over time.”

Code left Ubisoft to develop exactly that type of game. Her AI company, Tru Luv, launched its first product, a game appropriately titled #SelfCare, in 2018. Designed with the help of Dutch academic Isabela Granic, a professor at the Behavioural Science Institute (BSI) at Radboud University in the Netherlands and director of the Games for Emotional and Mental Health Lab, the game is centred around an avatar who stays in bed for the day and aims to relax players by using soothing music, muted colours and self-care practices…READ ON

Is Grit and Resilience Real? And How Do You Get It?

While you may hear the words “grit” and “resilience” bandied about a lot, it turns out that both are personality traits that can be critically important in helping guide you through life, no matter your personal stressors.

“When you’ve got grit, you tend to pair your sunny outlook with a willingness to take calculated risks others probably wouldn’t take.”

And, while you can absolutely become resilient over time, your background plays a role, as it provides some of the key building blocks to bouncing back during even the worst of times.

“Some people become more resilient due to such life experience as loss, trauma, and stress,” says Julie Sochacki, JD, a clinical associate professor of English at the University of Hartford, who began teaching her first-year students about resilience when her son was diagnosed with cancer. (He’s now in remission.) “Those experiences give you opportunities to practice resilience skills. By contrast, if your life has been easy, you may never have practiced those skills.”

Besides a history of handling tough times, optimism and confidence are other traits associated with resilience…READ ON

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