Vanessa Vershaw - Business Wisdom for Visionary Leaders

Presilience - remaining calm in the face of chaos

August 16, 2018

If you ask anyone how they feel about things right now they will tell you they feel like they are on a permanent roller coaster ride and experiencing life at the rate of several WTF’s per minute.

This feeling is not a figment of our imaginations.

The pace of modern business and the related stress that comes from facing constant change and disruption is turning many into the worst version of themselves –overwhelmed, distracted and unable to cope with pressures of life as we know it.

But there’s a light at the end of the tunnel and it’s called presilience. Defined as “an optimal state of knowing, seeing and being which enables us to thrive and evolve in times of seismic paradigm change” developing presilience enables us to regain control of our emotions and stay calm in the face of these challenges is critical to maintaining a happy life and it goes beyond your garden variety resilience.

What’s the difference? Resilience is the skill of controlling your emotions in bad or negative situations. Presilience is about teaching your brain to control your reactions before stressful events occur. It’s how top bomb experts are already in calm down mode during the act of diffusing the bomb and it’s a technique that’s been around for centuries.

How does this work? Presilient brains act like smart thermostats – even before the emotional heat arrives they cool down hot emotions and reinterpret events in a confident, positive and future-oriented light so that you can handle whatever adversity comes your way.

 Developing your presilience comes from practice. Much like a musician preparing for an upcoming concert or a CEO preparing for a stressful board meeting it’s about about re-creating the pressurised situation over and over again to teach your brain to calm itself at the right moment. Some of the other training rules include a no stopping rule – there’s no exit door until you complete the experience no matter how uncomfortable. You must see it through and finally Repeat. Repeat Again. This will help you to learn to endure and control spikes of intense emotion- time and repetition are your best friends.