5 Keys to Resilience | Bounce Back from Setbacks as You Age


Last Updated on June 25, 2024

Growing Bolder is rebranding aging from being a time of loss and limitation to a time of possibility and opportunity. Our later years should be a blessing to be celebrated, a chance to find our purpose, pursue our passions, discover new adventures, and spend time with the ones we love.

Although we choose to look at life through a prism of possibility, Growing Bolder doesn’t mean ignoring the challenges of aging. There are so many exciting times ahead for all of us, although we know there will be curveballs thrown at each of us and we will encounter challenges at different stages of our life. And although we will get knocked down at different times, the key is getting back up and moving forward. We don’t just want to survive, we want to thrive in our later years.

Whether we suffer an injury or a disease, the loss of a friend, financial hardship, and more, we all will face tough times. But these challenges are what enables us to develop resilience. Just like developing a muscle requires we tear it down so we can build it back stronger, our emotional stability strengthens as we navigate life’s challenges that come with aging.

Resilience is not a personality trait. It isn’t something we’re born with or born without. We have to develop resilience ‒ and the good news is anyone can. The following are five keys to building resilience, so you can bounce back from setbacks as you age:

1. Prehabilitate

The daily lifestyle choices we make every day have a profound impact on our future and prepare us for life’s setbacks. At Growing Bolder, we call this the “power of prehabilitation.” By exercising and staying active now, your body is better equipped to bounce back when an injury or a fall occurs in the future.  

Prehabilitation can even prevent the onset or delay the effects of disease. According to the CDC, seven of the 10 most common chronic diseases can be prevented through regular physical activity.

2. Community is immunity

Connecting with empathetic individuals can be a calming force in the presence of a storm. The kind of people we surround ourselves with remind us that we are not alone in the midst of our difficulties. It does take a village to navigate tough times, be it physical, mental, or spiritual, and having loved ones around you to lean on for support will make the journey easier.

Research by the CDC proves that social connections improve our immune health and help us cope better during a chronic illness and disease. Social connections prepare us to be resilient in the face of adversity and ease the effects of mental stressors and anxiety.

3. What you put in determines what you get out

Avoid negative coping when facing a setback. It’s tempting to turn to smoking, alcohol, unhealthy foods, or some other vice during a tough time, but what you put in your body determines what you’ll get out of your body.

Instead, fuel your longevity with a balanced diet, plenty of sleep, and the essential nutrients and supplements that will equip your body for recovering from setbacks. Growing Bolder is proud to offer a discount on the nutritional supplement product line from our friends at Thorne, which will help our followers lead healthy, active lives that are better equipped to deal with the challenges of age. Some of our favorite Thorne supplement to help you build resilience include:

  • Men’s Multi 50+ and Women’s Multi 50+ ‒ comprehensive daily multi-vitamin/mineral supplements for men and women that support a healthy, active lifestyle.
  • Recovery Bundle – A trio of supplements to replenish lost nutrients and promote the repair and rebuilding of muscle tissue.
  • Bone Support Bundle – Thorne’s Bone Support Bundle contains three supplements that promote healthy bones, including Advanced Bone Support, Super EPA, and Whey Protein Isolate.
  • Gut Health Bundle – Three supplements to promote healthy gastrointestinal function, supporting your gut from all angles. Gut health is key to the body’s vitamin production, metabolism regulation, and healthy immune function.

Growing Bolder is a proud paid affiliate partner of Thorne. When you purchase through our links, Growing Bolder earns an affiliate commission.

4. Find purpose in life

Research proves that living with a sense of purpose improves our mental and physical health, and lowers the risk of premature death. Your purpose doesn’t have to be profound ‒ it just needs to be something that moves you to action. Having a reason to get out of bed each day, something to look forward to, and a reason to keep going can be incredibly motivational and rewarding during the times we are going through challenges brought on by aging.

5. Practice gratitude

To develop resilience, we must embrace emotional balance. Although it can be challenging during hardship to stay positive, studies prove that practicing gratitude improves our physical and mental health, which are crucial to the body’s ability to bounce back from setbacks.

When you focus more on what you have, and less on what you lack, the road to recovery becomes a smoother journey. During tough times, embracing the sentiment of this famous quote by Alice Morse Earle will offer health benefits for years ahead: “Every day may not be good, but there’s something good in every day.”

Surviving & Thriving at the National Senior Games

Growing Bolder has interviewed thousands of individuals in their 50’s, 60’s, 70’s and beyond, even those over 100, who have overcome cancer, surgeries, falls, the loss of loved ones and careers, and many more hardships, and gone on to bounce back better than before.

Not surprising, one of the most concentrated groups of resilient individuals who have overcome the vast challenges of aging are senior athletes, many of whom we met while covering the National Senior Games.

It would be understandable to think the thousands of participants in the National Senior Games are “the lucky ones,” individuals who have somehow avoided the challenges of age; but that would be a misunderstanding. Individuals who stay active still suffer from aches and pains, diseases, disabilities, and unexpected life events just like anyone else. But there is growing evidence to suggest vigorous physical activity can minimize the effects, aid in recovery, and ease discomfort in ways that allow you to continue to live a vibrant life. Here are a few inspiring examples of individuals who are surviving and thriving:

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