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Fostering Resiliency

Essam El Hadary is the starting goalkeeper for the Egyptian Soccer Team. Essam… El Hadary’s nickname is the “high dam” for his tall stature and apparent impenetrability in goal. He is noted as one of Egypt’s top goalkeepers. He has won 8 Egyptian Premier League championships, the African Cup of Nations 4 times, and has over 150 international appearances. Oh… and did I mention he is 47 years old? In 2018, he became the oldest player to ever play in a FIFA World Cup contest.

Other than his extensive and impressive career, what makes El Hadary stand out, at least in my eyes, has been his ability to display resiliency throughout his career. Sure, he has trophies, championships, and a satisfying paycheck, but what about all the times he was left off the roster? What about all the injuries he's recovered from over the years? What about all the goals he’s let in by mistake, all the games lost by one goal, and the overwhelming “boos” from the opposing teams’ fans at every away game?

This level of resiliency, I’m sure, is the same level of resiliency which propelled him to such success in his career. How does he maintain this resilience? Are we born with it? And, how do we go about recreating this in our daily lives?

First, let’s start by examining the essence of resiliency. What are some things or objects that you would describe as resilient? How about elastic? What qualities of elastic allow it to be classified as resilient? How about its ability to “bounce back?" Or, what about a rope? A rope is resilient in that even when one of the threads tears, it still possesses immense strength. Lastly, what about our skin? Our very own skin is resilient. It possesses the ability to heal itself and recover from bruises, scrapes, and punctures.

Let’s examine these a little further. I asked earlier if we are all born with resiliency. The short answer is, Yes. We are all born with an inner nature that is resilient. Humans always desire to achieve the best outcome, or at the very least, strive to have control over a specific outcome. This “drive to choose” allows us to be in a perpetual state of resiliency. But what happens when we forget to take care of ourselves? Just like when we don’t take care of our own skin, we break down.

When we begin to break down and mentally and emotionally deteriorate, what is it that bounces you back? Is it exercise, is it sunlight, your favorite meal, your favorite music? Many times it is the people we keep around that help us get back to our old cheery self. Like a rope of many strands; when one breaks down, the others hold it together. Surrounding ourselves with those who support and strengthen us assist us in displaying resiliency.

Don’t forget, you are naturally resilient because you have an innate desire to seek a sense of control over your life, and you will continue to strive for this throughout your life. Also, it is important to take care of yourself, so you don’t get burnt out, drained, and mentally and emotionally fatigued. Surround yourself with a group of special people that are going to help you keep it all together and support you when things seem to be falling apart.


About Sam Nabil

Sam Nabil is the founder of Naya Clinics and is a Cincinnati therapist and a Cincinnati Marriage Counselor.

Sam offers therapy in Cincinnati and Cincinnati Marriage Counseling for adults suffering from relationship challenges, life transitions and anxiety.

Sam was featured in many prestigious publications. Check out his interview with Aljazeera English


Naya Clinics is a top-rated Marriage Counseling, therapy and Life coaching practice.

Naya Clinics offers Marriage Counselors near me, individual therapy near me, and life coaching near me in various locations across the USA and the world.


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