Do you consider yourself mentally tough? We all know that, in this life, there are times we need to be stable, solid, and steady. How well do you manage your feelings? Do you want to be mentally stronger? Okay, start by viewing hindrances and hurdles as steppingstones instead of obstacles.

You are bound to encounter trouble and tribulation at some point. How will you respond? In order to make healthy decisions, you need to be sharp and have your wits about you. When was the last time you exercised? Okay, not your body, but your mind.

I know. You’d have snow on your bicep peaks if they were any higher. Sure, biceps don’t grow on trees, but we need to build our mental strength, as well. You put so much work in at the gym that they sent you a W-2 at the end of the year? When you work out, know this: Your body won’t go where your mind doesn’t push it. I’ll never break up with my gym. We just seem to work out. But one hint: If you want to take up cross-country skiing, start with a small country.

Truth be told, we need to exercise our minds, sweet friends. Allow yourself to be inspired and influenced by some new knowledge. Set goals that expand your mental endurance. Challenge is the key. If the task is too easily achieved, you are playing it way too safe. To play it safe is not to play at all.

The relationship you have with yourself will set the tone for every other relationship in your life, my friends. Be aware of what you give your attention to. Do your best to be curious and non-judgmental when confronted with thoughts or feelings. Do not allow the media to lead you through fear. You are resilient and rock solid. Remember when the only “fake” news was the National Enquirer? You know some kids get confused when you tell them that you’re actually older than the Internet. Go figure.

Please zero in on staying in the moment. It’s easy to lose sight of what is right in front of you. That is where you have the means and capacity to make changes and set things right. Observe how often you say “can’t.” Yes, you can, sweet friends. Believe that.

Dedication and determination will get you through any difficulty or defeat. Speaking of self-control and exercise, it took a great deal of will, so I eventually gave up dieting. Listen, if vitamin water could only be opened, it could be counted as working out. And no, the handle does not count as an exercise system on your recliner chair.

Please stop spinning your wheels getting stuck on your problems. How often do you focus on the possible solutions? No doubt you have overcome many fears and won countless battles in your life. Celebrate your achievements.

Make self-awareness and personal development a priority in your life, please. What are some of your unhealthy habits of the mind? Do you ruminate and soak in self-pity? What is the most significant source of stress in your life right now? Do you view this as a threat or an opportunity? Have you learned how to take things in stride? Please remember that you make mistakes; mistakes don’t make you.

Do it now. “Someday” is not a day of the week. Witness what thoughts are passing through your mind right now, but do not allow yourself to become emotionally attached to them. Shift into neutral.

Ensure that your routines and daily habits enrich and elevate you. Do not avoid challenges out of fear of loss or failure. Believe that you are capable and competent enough to turn possibilities into triumphant outcomes.

Keep moving forward. Listen, I think it should be considered exercise to toss and turn all night. Your only workout consists of side-stepping accountability and pressing your luck? Sheesh. As always, every time you find humor in a trying situation, you win.

But truly, discover your own personal strategy for developing resilience. Discipline and hard work are your best friends. Always take positive actions. Face your fears head on, sweet friends. We will persevere through tough times. Hold onto your moral compass and you can deal with all of life’s ups and downs. Stay positive, and the ups will surely be more frequent than the downs. Believe that.

Caroline is a licensed psychotherapist, crisis counselor, and writer with an office in Queens.  She works with individuals, couples, and families.  Appointments are available throughout the week and weekends.  She can be reached at 917-717-1775 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or at