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A woman that had boarded a plane to visit family struggled to wedge her suitcase into the tight overhead bin. Eventually triumphantly closing the door and taking her seat. When the plane landed, she got up opened the bin and found her suitcase was struck so she began yanking and tugging. The suitcase didn’t budge. A man asked if he could help, and she replied, “It’ll come. I got it in, there has to be a way to get it out.”

Her calmness and confidence inspired me as I watched. She just knew it was coming out of there. She showed such a resilience as she put her hands on her hips and thought about it. Then she began again to dislodge the suitcase which she did after about 10 minutes and most everyone was off the plane. Resilience is the ability to adapt to challenging, stressful or upsetting circumstances, recovering enough to regroup, refocus and find ways back into a positive frame of mind.

The woman’s reaction to her stuck luggage was a beautiful example of one of the American Psychological Association’s tips for cultivating resilience: “Avoid seeing crises as insurmountable problems.”

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