9 habits of people who stay strong, even when life doesn’t go to plan

We sometimes include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Read our affiliate disclosure.

Life’s twists and turns often come when we least expect them, right? It’s during these moments that some people really step up to the plate and show their strength.

So, what’s their secret? How do these resilient people manage to not just survive but thrive when faced with life’s challenges?

In this article, we’ll talk about 9 habits that help people stay strong, even when things go wrong.

These tips can help you deal with tough times and come out feeling even better.

Let’s dive in.

1. They Keep Perspective

The first habit of people who stay strong is all about perspective. When things go wrong, it’s easy to think the sky is falling.

But resilient folks take a step back and look at the bigger picture.

Let’s say you’re late to an important meeting and you’re stuck in traffic.

Instead of freaking out and honking the horn like there’s no tomorrow, people who stay strong would use this time to breathe and maybe even enjoy some music.

They know that one bad day or one mistake isn’t the end of the world.

This way of thinking helps them avoid getting lost in stress and worry.

Remember, most problems aren’t as big as they seem at first.

So the next time you hit a bump in the road, take a deep breath and try to see it as just that—a small bump, not a mountain.

2. They Make Time for Self-Care

I’m a big believer in the power of Netflix and a cozy blanket. And guess what? So are folks who stay strong, even when life’s going haywire.

The second habit is making time for self-care. We’re talking about those little things that make you feel human again, like a warm bath, a good book, or even a quick jog around the block.

Life can get crazy, and when it does, it’s easy to push aside things that make you feel good.

But people who remain sturdy through life’s storms know that taking care of themselves is non-negotiable.

They understand that to tackle the world’s challenges, they’ve got to feel their best, both mentally and physically.

So when you’re tempted to skip your workout or binge-eat junk food because you’re stressed, think twice.

A little “me-time” can go a long way in helping you stay strong.

3. They’re Not Afraid to Ask for Help

Life can be brutal sometimes. You may face problems that feel way too big to handle on your own.

But asking for help doesn’t make you weak; it makes you wise.

People who stay strong in the chaos of life are often the first ones to pick up the phone and call a friend, family member, or even a professional when they’re in a bind.

You see, there’s a huge difference between being strong and acting tough.

Acting tough means you bottle everything up and pretend you’re okay.

Being strong means knowing when you can’t go it alone and having the courage to ask for support.

So let’s ditch the idea that asking for help is a sign of weakness.

We all have blind spots and limits. Reaching out for support simply means you’re aware of yours and you’re doing something about it.

And that is a sign of real strength.

4. They Embrace Failure as a Teacher, Not a Judge

People who stay strong actually love failure. I know, I know—it sounds crazy. Most of us treat failure like it’s the boogeyman hiding under our bed, something to be avoided at all costs.

But the resilient ones? They see failure as a wise teacher, not a harsh judge.

When they mess up or things don’t go as planned, they don’t waste time beating themselves up or playing the blame game.

Instead, they ask, “What can I learn from this?”

They understand that every setback is a setup for a comeback, and every mistake is a lesson in disguise.

The counterintuitive thing about embracing failure is that it actually speeds up your path to success.

When you’re not afraid to fail, you’re willing to try new things, take risks, and put yourself out there.

And that’s where the magic happens.

So the next time you face a setback, don’t run from it. Lean in, learn what you can, and use it as fuel for your next big leap forward.

5. They Set Healthy Boundaries

You might be the nicest person on the planet, always wanting to help others.

That’s awesome—I’m a bit like that too, always wanting to solve problems and lend a hand.

But here’s the thing: people who stay strong know when to say “no,” and they’re not afraid to set healthy boundaries.

It’s easy to think that always saying “yes” makes you a better friend, family member, or employee.

But if you’re always giving 110% to everyone else, what’s left for you? Burnout city, that’s where you’re headed.

People who stay strong understand that their time and energy are precious. They protect those resources by setting clear boundaries, both for themselves and for the people around them.

Saying “no” doesn’t mean you’re selfish; it means you’re self-aware.

You recognize your limits, and you make choices that help you stay balanced and strong.

Related articles:

6. They Cultivate a Growth Mindset

Ever heard of the term “growth mindset”? It’s a concept from psychology that suggests your abilities and intelligence can be developed through dedication and hard work.

People with a growth mindset are more likely to enjoy challenges, seek out feedback, and ultimately be successful.

People who stay strong even when life gets messy have this growth mindset nailed down.

They believe that they can always learn, adapt, and improve, no matter the circumstances.

Whether they’re facing a minor hiccup or a major setback, they don’t see it as a limit to their abilities but as a challenge to grow.

With a growth mindset, you look at difficulties as questions just waiting to be answered. Instead of thinking, “I can’t do this,” you’ll think, “I can’t do this yet, but I can learn.”

This shift in thinking is powerful and gives you the energy to tackle life’s curveballs head-on.

7. They Prioritize Rest Over Hustle

In a world that glorifies the “hustle culture,” this next habit might sound downright strange: people who stay strong actually prioritize rest over endless grinding.

Yep, you heard that right.

While the world around them is chanting “you can sleep when you’re dead,” these folks are taking a step back to catch some Z’s or simply unwind.

We’re often told that if we’re not busy 24/7, we’re not productive or successful.

But the truth is, constant hustling without a break is a recipe for burnout and stress, which makes you less effective in the long run.

People who stay strong recognize that rest is not a reward for hard work; it’s a crucial part of the process.

They know that their minds and bodies need time to recharge to tackle challenges effectively.

Resting allows them to gain fresh perspectives, come up with creative solutions, and most importantly, it keeps their resilience tank full.

So the next time you feel the urge to pull an all-nighter to get ahead, consider hitting the pause button instead.

Trust that giving yourself a break might just be the secret weapon you need to come back stronger and wiser.

8. They Celebrate Small Wins

If you’re anything like me, you might often find yourself so focused on the end goal that you overlook the small victories along the way.

But people who stay strong, even when life doesn’t go as planned, make it a habit to celebrate their small wins.

And no, I’m not just talking about the occasional pat on the back. I mean taking a moment to genuinely appreciate the progress they’ve made, no matter how tiny it might seem.

Did you make it to the gym even though you were tired? That’s a win! Managed to stay calm in a stressful meeting? Another win!

These moments might seem insignificant, but each one is a stepping stone towards your bigger goals.

People who stay strong know that life isn’t just about the grand finales; it’s also about the little victories that get you there.

Each small win builds confidence, maintains momentum, and adds a little fuel to your resilience tank.

So go ahead, give yourself credit where it’s due. A little celebration can make the journey a lot more enjoyable, and believe me, you’ve earned it.

9. They Stay Connected to Their ‘Why’

Last but definitely not least, people who stay strong have a rock-solid connection to their “why”—their reason for doing what they do.

Whether it’s a personal goal like getting healthier or a larger purpose like making a positive impact on the community, this ‘why’ is their North Star.

It’s what pulls them forward, especially when times get tough.

Life is full of distractions and obstacles that can make you question your path.

When you’re stuck in the mud, it’s this ‘why’ that helps you dig your heels in and push through.

It reminds you that even when the going gets tough, there’s a bigger picture worth fighting for.

If you ever find yourself drifting or feeling overwhelmed, pause and reconnect with your ‘why.’ It’s the most potent source of motivation and strength you’ve got.

In moments of doubt or difficulty, your ‘why’ can reignite your passion and give you the resilience to keep moving forward.

Related articles: