Resilience is the Super Power of Underdogs


Resilience is the Super Power of Underdogs: Here are 4 Practices to Develop It.

I am intrigued by the underdog, the person that makes it against all odds when things appear to not be in their favor. My interest in these resilient achievers led me to investigate this subject in more depth.  What I found interesting was that their success was not driven by some uncanny intelligence or superhuman faculties. Success was most often attributed to their ability to work through stress and adversity. Success was determined by their ability to endure. Underdogs were able to make adverse circumstances work in their favor and sustain a high level of effort through out their struggle.

There were four practices that resilient achievers used to create success.


Underdogs were connected. They were connected to people and resources needed to support them while fighting the good fight. Forming a network of mentors, coaches, colleagues and friends was an important part of their support system. Like a coach, resilient achievers put people on their team that played different roles. Their team members brought unique talents and skills that helped the underdog thrive. Being connected to critical resources like organizations, advocacy groups and learning institutions  was also critical  as this allowed them to develop the capacity needed to overcome challenges.


Underdogs dedicated time to think and reflect about their goals and their purpose. Reflection was a method they used to process emotions and obtain deeper insights regarding their practice. Reflection became a critical driving force behind their will to succeed.


Underdogs were able to manage stress by making time to engage in activities they enjoy. Csikszentmihalyi in his book Flow discusses the power of engaging in activities that we enjoy. People engaged in enjoyable activities tend to be more mindful and focused, thus able to persevere through set back. Underdogs understand the importance of joy and make it an important priority.


Underdogs take action on their goals and identify the incremental steps needed to achieve a desired outcome. By being specific and establishing smart goals these resilient achievers were able to measure progress and stay optimistic over the long haul.


These are just four practices of underdogs. What practices have you noticed? I would love to hear your thoughts. Please leave a response to the post.



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