We have a poster in our pool area where I work at the Manor House Wellness Center. It says, "Growing Old is Not for Sissies." On the poster, there's a picture of a fit man and woman in their 60s and 70s. We've had this poster on the wall for 16 years now to remind us that maintaining good health is not always easy.

Over the past 16 years, I've had the opportunity to watch people actively age and I've seen many resilient people. Their ability to bounce back after a challenge is very encouraging. Every time a person finishes physical therapy and is able to resume participation in one of our group exercise classes, it inspires all of us to overcome the challenges in life.

Aristotle said, "You are what you repeatedly do." We live our life based on the patterns that we choose to establish, whether they are healthy or unhealthy patterns. Resilient people choose to be independent with their decision-making. When an accident or an unforeseen event occurs, they have no problem facing that challenge and solving it, rather than become a victim of the problem.

Are you resilient? Do you have somebody catering to you and serving you every day? Or, do your friends and family build your confidence and independence when they are with you? Resilient people have great qualities and characteristics that all of us should model. They have the ability to maintain a positive attitude and positive interpersonal relationships.

They always keep a sense of purpose in their life and work on maintaining a positive self-esteem. These resilient people are also creative and have the ability to use humor to help them through their day. Most importantly, I think, resilient people accept the changes in their life and they believe in their own ability to get well and stay well.

Make a choice to flex your resilience muscles. Encourage your friends and family to flex theirs also. We never know when we may need that resilience to get over a challenge.

Here's to your good health.

About the author: Jonathan Souder is the fitness director at Manor House, an ACTS Retirement-Life Community in Seaford. Email your thoughts to jsouder@actslife.org.

the power of being more resilient