top of page

Recourage- The Opposite of Discourage

Now more than ever, our resilience is tested, our resolve tried, our threshold pushed. These are uncertain times and the only thing we can be certain of is how we approach every day, every challenge, every setback. It is so very easy to get discouraged when we face criticism, judgment, and failure. Let's choose to be "recouraged". "Recourage" our spirits by focusing on the process and simply push through. "Recourage" ourselves when we refuse to be held down by whatever life throws at us. On days where everything is going well, you feel motivated, almost like you can do no wrong. However, a true test of one’s character is when things go south. When you feel like the world is against you, how will you react?

Resilience is one of those concepts that is fashionable to preach but its implementation is often tricky. Hence those who successfully possess the skill-set, are better equipped to succeed. One only knows if they are truly resilient and "recouraged" once they are faced with adversity. "Recourage" and Resilience go hand in hand, to have that bit between your teeth to refuse to be discouraged is the very essence of resilience. To have "recourage" is to be resilient.

Will you choose to be downtrodden or reinvigorated? Will you be wallowing in self-pity or searching for creative solutions? Yes, it is easier said than done, but I implore you to give it a try. The next time you feel down in the dumps, dust yourself off, pat yourself on the back and keep moving forward by reminding yourself that everyone falls, but not everyone gets back up. That is what separates you from the rest.

“What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”

Starting today, bare these 5 principles in mind, apply them consistently and your next challenge will be met with a more "recouraged" you.

5 keys of resilience

  • Self- Awareness

  • Attention

  • Letting go- physical

  • Letting go-mental

  • Accessing & sustaining positive emotions


Having a degree of self-awareness refers to understanding your thinking process, having an awareness of your feelings and desires. It is also important to develop a comprehension of how your thinking process may be affected by your feelings and desires whether they are conscious or subconscious.


Attention is a crucial element, as it is easy to get caught up with worrying about the future or over-analyzing the past. A core element of being "recouraged" is to be focused on the present. Focusing on the here and now, would eradicate stressors that arise from looking at the past or attempting to predict the future.

Letting Go Physically

Letting go: Physical is letting go in terms of bodily tension and physiological arousal. Achieving a state of physical relaxation just as you are about to plunge into the depths of exhaustion and counter-productivity. Finding an outlet that enables your body to physically rest is pivotal.

Letting Go Mentally

Letting go: Mental, the mental aspect of letting go is similar to the mindfulness-based therapy that is increasingly prevalent in the treatment of mental disorders, where patients are guided towards viewing themselves as separate entities from their emotions and feelings. Many a time, we are caught up in our emotions, we become so wedded to them that we are unable to detach from them and take a step back to re-evaluate ourselves.

Accessing & Sustaining Positive Emotions

A positive outlook is one of the keys to “recouraging” yourself when faced with adversity. Having a positive mindset is easy when things are smooth, anyone can do that. Separate yourself from the herd by employing a positive mindset at all times especially through trials and tribulations.

Once again, I am aware of it is easier said than done. Make no doubt, this will be a process and not an overnight switch. It will require constant evaluation and self-awareness but I assure you, that it will all be worthwhile.

Undoubtedly, as you go about applying these principles, you will encounter teething problems, persevere through them, remind yourself of the importance of “recourage”; the avoidance of discouragement. The mental gymnastics required may seem tedious but make no mistake, they will put you in good stead for whatever endeavor you choose to embark on. Use this lull wisely to sharpen your mind, after all, continuous improvement is the hallmark of every successful individual.

It’s your reaction to adversity, not adversity itself that determines how your life’s story will develop – Dieter F. Uchtdorf


bottom of page